Corp J.A. Searight
Dear Mr. Irwin,-
I was very pleased to receive your letter some time ago and as usual am very slow to answer. That however seems to be a weakness of mine lately for outside of writing home and of course to my sweet one I write very little.
At present I am in the line sitting, not in a deep dugout as was our privilege before the push but rather in a little funkhole dug with the parapet just big enough to stretch out and take cover from shrapnel.
For, as scoutmaster, would I am sure, have considerable amusement if you could see us put in a day here. While in this advanced position, we never think of washing or shaving for it takes all the water we got to drink. We make a little heater by placing a little sandbag and shavings of a candle in a can and boil water in our mess tin and then pour in our tea sugar and milk. The latter comes daily in the rations while we are in the line.
To hear of this, one might think that we are having a very raw time; but we takes things as they come, and I for one, am just as happy as anybody could wish to be.
I note by your letter, the dear old class, R.O.H. are forming a Pocket Testament League and I think that is splendid.
When home, I used to read mine but never carried one with me, but now it is in my pocket always, except for daily reading. I am sorry to say it, but it is the case, that it was the trenches that make me fully realize that I aught to put forth more effort to serve Him who has always been so good and kind to me. I could tell you a special case where it was the unseen hand that protected me just last trip in battle- keep it from Father & Mother I will not speak of it until I see you, which I hope will be soon.
Four nights have seen considerable newspaper talk about aeroplanes but it’s here we realize the value of the new type. Hynie’s “rad-dial,” or as is commonly known, will not show fights with these and if they do, they are almost soon to meet the same fate as one did just a minute-ago, which came down in flames just a little in rear of the trench I am now in
I am feeling fine, kind regards to all K.O.H.
It seems a long time since I started this but it has seen a little trench life before reaching you.
We are now enjoying a very pleasant time in rest
Yesterday I discovered a little pool, running water, for bathing so you may guess what I will be doing very shortly.
Am now holding rank of L. Sergeant This promotion is since making our last trip in [?].
Got letter from Verner McN telling of signing up.