John MacGregor

Memorial Award

About Captain John MacGregor VC

John MacGregor (VC, MC and Bar, DCM) is Canada’s most decorated soldier for valour, who during
WW1 served over three years in the horrific trenches of the Western Front (including Ypres, Vimy Ridge,
Hill 70, the Somme, and Cambrai) as a fearless soldier and gallant leader of men. He was also a selfless
civilian when, in 1921, captaining his boat in the Hecate Strait he made quick decisions to cut and
release all his fishing lines to save the life of a badly injured crew member; and again in 1923 when he
alone fearlessly boarded a flaming vessel in Prince Rupert, cut its lines to save a commercially valuable
wharf, then axed a hole to sink the vessel; he swam to safety but not before suffering serious burns
requiring lengthy hospitalization. During WW2 Lt. Col. John MacGregor commanded the 2nd Battalion,
Canadian Scottish Regiment based in Victoria training soldiers for overseas duty. After the war, he
resumed working and living in Powell River until his death from cancer there on June 9th1952 at the age
of 63. As eulogized by a fellow soldier and long-time friend, “I saw that here was a man’s man; a brave
and kindly soul who was capable of lifting the most timid of us to almost heroic proportions by his own
magnificent example”.

Photo of Lieutenant Colonel John MacGregor taken Christmas 1946, when he was Commanding Officer of the 2nd Battalion, Canadian Scottish Regiment based in Victoria, BC.

To learn more about Captain John MacGregor VC visit The Western Front Association website.

The intent of the John MacGregor Memorial Award is two-fold: to raise awareness of the man and keep alive the memory of his valorous contributions to Canada’s role in WW1; and to recognize in his name the contributions of the similarly selfless and brave volunteers who serve as members of the British Columbia Search and Rescue Association (BCSARA).

To donate to the fund click here.


About the Founder

The John MacGregor Memorial Award was established in 2021 by John MacGregor Horne whose father Major Jack Horne served as second-in-command to Lt. Col. MacGregor when he commanded the 2nd Battalion, Canadian Scottish Regiment based in Victoria training soldiers for overseas duty in WWII. Such was his admiration and respect for MacGregor the man and his illustrious military career, he made him my namesake. I am honoured to have founded the Award and am pleased that it will be a lasting memorial to MacGregor’s conspicuous valour in WWI while celebrating in his name the brave and selfless volunteers of the British Columbia Search and Rescue Association.



P.O. Box 2176
Sidney BC
V8L 3S6

For Emergencies, Call 911 or
1-800-663-3456 (Satelite Phone)

News Alerts

🚨With the long weekend ahead and our call volume at a record high, we've launched a video series today that illustrates the risks of the top 11 trails that have the most search and rescue calls in BC. Check these videos out and hike smart! @BCAdvSmart

Our TRAIL SPECIFIC SAFETY VIDEO series includes a popular trail aka ‘Mother Nature’s Stair Master!’

The GROUSE GRIND TRAIL IS CURRENTLY CLOSED due to hazardous conditions (❄️&🧊).

When @MetroVancouver opens the #GG we’ll share our 10th trail specific safety video.

Tough callouts summon the best in each of us.  After a traumatic event we need to mentally process this uncommon experience, and looking after our bodies will aid this process.  Drink plenty of water, eat healthy foods & avoid excess caffeine, alcohol or cannabis. #CISMSaturday

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