Following in the footsteps of their father Albert Carty, who served with the No. 2 Construction Battalion – the only all-Black expeditionary force in Canada’s military history – during the First World War, five Carty brothers from New Brunswick saw military action in World War II.
Among them was Don Carty, an aircraftman equipment assistant, who recently passed away in Toronto after a brief illness. He was 88.
When his military service ended, Carty came to the city and studied journalism at Ryerson (now Ryerson University). He was a freelance writer for the Canadian Negro Publishing Association, which was partially financed by the late world heavyweight boxing champion, Joe Louis.
While he enjoyed writing, Carty was forced to work as a porter with the Canadian National Railway to support his family.
“Not once did he express regret about having to do this work,” said his son Gilbert. “In fact, he always had a sense of humour in telling us the toughest part of his job was shaking farts out of bedspreads.”
Carty, who embraced the Baha’i Faith, loved folk dancing and was a dedicated Big Boy Scout. He was also a longstanding member of the Ontario Black History Society.
“Our father was truly a gentleman who embraced life and humanity,” his son added. “He was a great example of how we should live. His grace and charm came natural to him.”
In addition to Gilbert, Carty is survived by Doris, his wife of 63 years, and children Diane, Albert and Barbara.
By RON FANFAIR