Nurses of World War I: Stella May Jenkins

Stella May Jenkins was born at Belleville on November 20, 1881 daughter of John Jenkins and Mary Sullivan. The family lived at 142 Church Street.

House at 142 Church Street, Belleville

She was educated locally and was a graduate of the Nursing School at St. Luke’s Hospital in Utica, New York about 1906. Here she continued to practice her profession until she enlisted in the Canadian Army Medical Corps on January 6, 1916 in Kingston.

Height:  5’ 9”

Weight:  150lb

Age: 34

Nursing Sister Jenkins sailed for England in March 1916 with the Queen’s University Unit of Nursing Sisters and was first attached to the Duchess of Connaught Hospital on Lady Astor’s Estate; after four months Miss Jenkins was sent to the Canadian Hospital at Le Tréport, France following which she was transferred to Etaples near Boulogne. Sir Douglas Haig, commander of the British forces, commended her for conspicuous bravery, an honour which resulted in her being awarded England’s Laurel Leaf; at an outdoor investiture at Buckingham Palace at the end of the war she was personally decorated by King George with the Royal Red Cross First Class Medal. Miss Jenkins returned to Canada setting sail on July 5, 1919 aboard the S.S. Carmania, was assigned to the Queen’s Military Hospital and was discharged on October 16, 1919. Nurse Jenkins returned to Utica where she served as Director of the Utica Red Cross and in 1942 was awarded the Business and Professional Club of Utica’s Scroll of Achievement Award.

Stella May Jenkins died at St. Luke’s Hospital in Utica on March 23, 1954 aged 72 years 4 months 3 days. She is interred at the Belleville Cemetery Section D Row 11 Grave 4.