New Middlemiss street to be named for veteran

·2 min read

The newest street will have a locally historic name — eventually.

As explained by director of operations Greg Storms, people who want to build homes on this new street need a name for emergency services if they are to get building permits.

The process hit a bit of a snag at the May 11 council meeting. Instead of the planned recommendation that the new name be MacPhail Street in honour of a family of Second World War veterans, a new list will be sent to the County of Middlesex for approval.

The issue was how Middlemiss likes to name its streets with first names only.

Local historian Joanne Galbreith, who made the original recommendation after researching a list of Middlemiss veterans, was the one who realized she missed this convention.

“Joanne is the undisputed historian,” said Mayor Allan Mayhew.

He asked for council to move that Galbreith work with Southwest Middlesex staff to send a new list of first names right away to the County of Middlesex for approval. The county makes sure there are no duplicate names in the municipality to make life easier for emergency services.

“There’s not going to be a lot of streets named in Middlemiss. It may be a long time before we have the opportunity to do it again,” said Mayhew.

Council agreed, and the first name approved by the county will be the new street name. It will not need council’s approval again.

This will be the third and hopefully last name suggested for the street. Galbreith was asked to come up with a list of veterans after Mill Street was denied by the county because it already exists in Glencoe.

The MacPhail family moved to Middlemiss around 1940, according to Galbreith. She said John and Neil MacPhail served in the Armed Forces, while Florence MacPhail (née Starko), wife of Neil, was in the Women’s Royal Naval Service. Galbreith added the spelling of the last name was originally McPhail but was changed when the family enlisted. All have since passed away.

Other last names submitted included Halpin, De Cow (pronounced de-coo), Lucas, Graham, Dell, and McDonald.

Only Halpin and De Cow were not denied by the county, though it did discourage De Cow over possible confusion with pronunciation. Earl Halpin served in the First World War. Galbreith could not find the first name of De Cow, who served in the Boer War.

Chris Gareau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Middlesex Banner

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