No. 59907. Scout W. J. Stares.
21st Canadian Batt. (Sniper Sect.)
2nd C. E. F. 4th Brigade
B. E. F. France
Feb. 14th 1916
Dear Mr. Irwin:- Yours of the 31st reached me yesterday, and I must say was full of surprises: pleased, and sad. I was not aware of the death of Russel Pearce untill your letter arrived. I was behind his lines some little time ago, on a night worthing[?] party, and I must say I was not in Love with the place. C. Southgate is getting along nicely. It was a chance shot that got him at night.- the stray shots account for more men than the direct ones to my estimation.- Robus seem to be one of the unlucky boys.- I had a narrow escape myself a few night ago a bullet just singeing my cap, and gave me quite a scare for the moment: I have yet to realized the fact that Miss Aliee Parker is married.- A fine girl – one of my best friends- since I first came to Canada, Tommy Jones is a lucky boy to get her- Another surprise is to learn that F. B. Garluck has enlisted also Arthur Searight and McKenty. Norwood must look like a Military town these days. with so many Kharki Boys round- things have been very hostile these last few days along this Front.- the Germans trying to find a weak spot in our line but without success.- weather here very nice- fields so green- Was out picking Snow-drops in full bloom on Feb. 12th for a comrade grave.- Some of the Boys are away on a 10 days leave to England, and I am anxiously waiting for my turn to come—If I can get away before Brother Charley (who is at Salisbury) leaves for the Front.- we intend to have a family union, the first for 10 years.- and we shall all be in Kharki—I am feeling fine and fit.- and also the rest of the Norwood Boys.
Shall try and find out particulars of Death and Burial place of Russel Pearce, these Aireal Torpedoes are the worst things to contend with. (German Sausages) we call them. You can hear then coming as they turn over. wobble Wobble, and then a crash. making a hole bigger than any Jack Johnson.—
Will close for this time- With Best Wishes. Remember me to the family.
I. Remain. Yours Sincerely
W. J. Stares