George Llewellyn Thomas

George Llewellyn Thomas George Llewellyn Thomas was born August 28, 1909 in Cardiff Wales to Elizabeth Mary (Haynes) Thomas. Her husband was John Thomas, but he was not the father of baby George. According to the information received from Dr. Barnardo’s Homes; George was the result of an affair with another coalminer named George Williams that happened when Elizabeth and John Thomas were separated. When Elizabeth and John Thomas got back together John refused to have the child who was not his live with the family. Elizabeth was a seamstress and earned money to pay for George to be looked after by other women. Due to a coal strike in 1911 she was unable to pay for George’s care and she lost track of where he was. George was taken into care by Dr. Barnardo’s Homes after they investigated the woman who was looking after him. John Thomas still refused to have George live with the rest of the family so Elizabeth signed George over to Barnardo’s at the age of 18 months. Up until the age of 10 he lived with foster parents and at various Barnardo’s homes. On June 15, 1920 he set sail for Canada on the Scotian. He was sent to the receiving home on Peter St. in Toronto and then on to the Hunter farm in Cheltenham, ON. He lived and worked on the Hunter farm until the age of 19 when the farmer passed away and he was old enough to leave. His follow up reports state that he was doing fine on the farm and he confirms this on his Canadian inspection visit where he stated the he would not have stayed if he was not happy. Although he never did tell his family that he was a British Home Child he did bring several family members to the see where the farm he worked on was located. After he left the farm George moved to New Hamburg, Ontario to work at the Hahn Brass Company. He married Margaret Panchen there in 1934 and they had five children. George fought in WW2; where he survived Juno Beach. After the war he went on to become the Chief of Police in the village of New Hamburg and was also famously known as an eyewitness to a sighting of the Nith River Monster which attracted many visitors to the village in the summer of 1953. Even though George was taken into care at the age of 18 months, he knew he was from the Rhondda Valley area of Wales and that he had a sister Nancy. He told family that he tried to find his mother and sister while he was posted in England during the war, but was unable to find them. We are still trying to find out what happened to his mother and if there are any descendants of his half-sister Nancy Thomas (b September 27, 1904) and two half-brothers John Hayden Thomas (b September 26, 1906) and William Thomas (b 1911) all from Pentre, Glamorgan, Wales. From the information we received from Dr. Barnardo’s Homes no one had inquired about George until we did in 2000. George died July 7, 1970 without ever finding his family in Wales. L Even though we have not yet found his family we are very grateful that Barnardo’s kept such detailed records and photographs so that we were able to discover the truth about his childhood.