Lessard Lane is a modern subdivision road that runs north off of Old Derry Road, just to the east of Meadowvale Village Heritage Conservation District.
The road is named in memory of former area resident, Major-General Francois-Louis Lessard (1860-1927), who owned the property on which the subdivision was built.
Lessard was born in Quebec City, and at the age of 20 joined the Quebec Garrison Artillery company, marking the beginning of a distinguished military career.
In 1884, he joined the Cavalry School Corps (Royal Canadian Dragoons) and was active during the Northwest Rebellion in 1885. Lessard was promoted to Captain in 1888 and Major in 1894. In 1896, he was made Inspector of Cavalry for the Dominion of Canada. In 1898, he was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel and placed in command of the Royal Canadian Dragoons. He took part in the Second Boer War in 1899 in South Africa, and was later made a Companion of the Military Order of the Bath by King Edward VII.
Lessard returned to Canada in 1901 and was appointed Adjutant-General of the Canadian Militia in 1907. He became a Colonel in 1907, Brigadier-General in 1911, and Major-General in 1912. In 1919, following the First World War, Lessard retired to Meadowvale Village, where he passed away in 1927 – one of Canada’s most decorated soldiers.
He was remembered as an extremely popular soldier, a stern but just disciplinarian, and, in the words of militia minister Sydney Mewburn: “a fine type of Canadian citizen.”
NOTE: This story was previously published as part of the Way Back Wednesday series in Modern Mississauga by Heritage Mississauga.
It can be found on their website here: https://www.modernmississauga.com/main/2019/5/1/the-history-of-mississaugas-lessard-lane
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