59907. Cpl. W.J. Stares
F. Coy 6th Can. Res. Bn.
May 27th 1918.
Dear Mr. Irwin.
Your welcomed letter of April 19th reached me yesterday. I have been away from Camp for the past month, at the largest Military camp in England, taking a course in Musketry. The authorities either though I was too good a man to send to France or else no good (the later I think) so they decided to send me away.- needless to say I made good, getting a “Distinguished” and have hopes of a Staff job at the School. This will give me a great boost.- Arriving here I found that I had won first prize in a competition for Design of a Military Badge suitable for the Eastern Ontario Regiment composing of the 21st 2nd 38th and P.P.C.L.I. Battalion. The design has been to all the different Battalions in France and was decided the best sent in, the second prize was also mine although I did not actually draw it or submitted it.
I can just picture to myself the scene in the post office, and imagine the fun you had with Miss McL.- is she still all that you boosted her to be. She hasn’t started to flirt yet. Eh. Karl had forgotten to write some time, he owes me a letter and I was wondering if anything had happened to him, I am very pleased that he is so far safe, for he will see plenty of fighting yet, Many thanks for the Membership Card, and I was tickled to death to think that a Methodist lad has yet to be drafted, To day at Church I shook hands with Capt. Birdsall the first time I have seen him since we left for Cobourg 1914 he is with us so I hope to have a good chat with him. You did not write your letter under pleased conditions. Furnace out. House cold, and no table to steady your hand. Are you Batching it! Glad to hear that McKenty arrived home safe, he just left here in time, or he would likely have had been in France again, Quite a number of Boys pronounced unfit and was actually on the Boat for Canada, ready to sail, was pulled off and returned to their units (where the Push started) and some of them are serving in France with Labour Battalion. Capt. Thompson must have had a very severe dose of trench fever, 6 weeks is about the longest case I know of. Weather here simply glorious, and as I have been in one of the prettiest spots in England, for the last month. Enjoying the scenery, with girl friends, (please do not tell Miss McL. this, will you) I feel as though I have had my summers holidays. still I had to study very hard, and pass 8 examinations during that time, so that took some of the cream off.
Please remember me to all the kind people of Norwood, and to Mrs. Irwin and Family. I will now close for this time with kind regards.
William James Stares