Donald Agnew

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Donald Agnew
Born October 25, 1897
Allegiance Canada
Service/branch Canadian Army
Rank Brigadier-General
Commands held RMC, Canadian Artillery Reinforcement Unit,
Awards CBE, CD, ADC

Brigadier-General Donald Robert Agnew, CB, CBE, CD, ADC (born October 25, 1897, date of death unknown) was a Canadian General and educator.


Agnew was born in Toronto on October 25, 1897 to Major John Agnew and Daisy Edith Stocks. Following the death of Daisy Edith Stocks in 1902, Major John Agnew married Elizabeth Dickenson, of Toronto. Major John Agnew, 127th Battalion, Canadian Infantry, served overseas in World War I, along with his three sons, Lt. Donald Agnew, of the Canadian Reserve Artillery, Lt. Ellis Agnew, 351 Brigade R.F.A., and Lt. Ronald Agnew, of the Royal Canadian Navy. While her husband and sons were overseas during the war, Mrs. Elizabeth Agnew moved temporarily to Hamilton, Ont.


Agnew was educated at the University of Toronto Schools. He studied at the RMC, student # 1137 in 1915.


He returned to RMC in Kingston as Commandant and ADC to the Governor-General (1947–54). At the time, RMC was the only military college with a four year course, the course was 15 percent military content. During this period, the New One Hundred Opening Ceremonies were held (20 September 1948). He devised a new system of organization at RMC consisting of a vice-commandant as director of studies, to coordinate the military and academic training at RMC and to represent RMC at the National Conference of Canadian Universities as the equivalent of a vce-principal. The commandant personally commanded the cadet battalion. A staff-adjutant issued the routine orders.

He presided over the New One Hundred Opening Ceremonies at the RMC on 20 September 1948. He inaugurated the Old Brigade, for alumni celebrating 50 years since they entered one of the Canadian Royal Military Colleges in 1950. He was photographed as Commandant of RMC when Queen Elizabeth II, who was known as Princess Elizabeth before her accession, and Prince Philip visited on 12 October 1951.

Lieutenant-General Stuart's Major Appointments

Cadet at RMC
1940–1942 Commanding Officer 14th Field Regiment Royal Canadian Artillery 1915-18
1942 Commanding Officer No. 1 Canadian Artillery Reinforcement Unit, England
1942-44 Commanding Officer 1st Canadian Anti-Aircraft Brigade, England
1942-45 Director-General of Anti-Aircraft Artillery
1945–1947 District Officer Commanding 7th Military District
1947-54 Commandant of Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario and ADC to the Governor-General
1954–1957 Director of Imperial War Graves Commission in North-West Europe
1958 Retired


  • 4237 Dr. Adrian Preston & Peter Dennis (Edited) "Swords and Covenants" Rowman And Littlefield, London. Croom Helm. 1976.
  • H16511 Dr. Richard Arthur Preston "To Serve Canada: A History of the Royal Military College of Canada" 1997 Toronto, University of Toronto Press, 1969.
  • H16511 Dr. Richard Arthur Preston "Canada's RMC - A History of Royal Military College" Second Edition 1982
  • H1877 R. Guy C. Smith (editor) "As You Were! Ex-Cadets Remember". In 2 Volumes. Volume I: 1876-1918. Volume II: 1919-1984. Royal Military College. [Kingston]. The R.M.C. Club of Canada. 1984
  • World Generals
  • The Agnew family fonds 1912-19, McMaster University
  • RMC Club of Canada Newsletter
Academic offices
Preceded by
Air Commodore Douglas Bradshaw
Commandant of the Royal Military College of Canada
Succeeded by
Major General J.F.M. Whiteley