GARBUTT Sarah Ellen – Canadian Army Nursing Service
Sarah Ellen Garbutt was born on 14th May 1975 at Pickering, Yorkshire, England, the daughter of William and Ann Garbutt. In 1881 the family consisting of William, Ann and their 4 children, Ann Elizabeth aged 10, George aged 7, Sarah Ellen aged 5, Esther aged 2 and Ada aged 2 months were living at Eastgate, Pickering. William was employed as a quarry labourer. The family were still resident at Eastgate in 1891.
By 1901 Sarah had left home and was working as a housemaid and one of several servants at the home of a wealthy industrialist, Thomas A. Duncan of Westbourne, Otley, Yorkshire.
On 26th April 1905 at the age of 29 Sarah Garbutt sailed from Liverpool on the SS Vancouver bound for Montreal, Canada. Her occupation was given as a Domestic. It is not known when or where she undertook her nurse training in Canada but at the time of her enlistment with the Canadian Army Nursing Service, Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force on 3rd April 1917 at Kingston, Ontario, her occupation was recorded as a Professional Nurse. Her next of kin with whom she resided at Simcoe St., Oshawa, Ontario was her brother, the Reverend John Garbutt.
Sadly her army service was very short lived. Nursing Sister Sarah Garbutt sailed from Halifax, Canada on 29th May 1917, arriving at Liverpool, England on 8th June. She was posted to the Canadian Military Hospital at Orpington, Kent but just 19 days later on 27th June 1917 she was admitted to the QAIMNS Hospital at 71 Vincent Square, London with a diagnosis of sciatica. The diagnosis proved to be incorrect and she died in the hospital on 20th August 1917 from malignant disease of the abdomen. She was buried in Brookwood Military Cemetery, Surrey, Grave III. A. 15.
National Archives of Canada Reference: RG 150, Accession 1992-93/166, Box 3399 – 50.