I had the good fortune of spending this past week in Northern France with Megan. We visited Mont Saint-Michel and the D-Day beaches; Remembrance Day we went to the Canadian Center at Juno Beach, and stopped at Lisieux on the way to Vimy the next day.
My great uncle Vernon died during WW2. My mother was helping my grandmother get ready to move and they came across some of his letters. There’s a copy of one of his letters after the video.
Ironically for the song, we didn’t make it to the Beaumont Hamel Newfoundland Memorial.
Anyways, here’s the letter from Vernon.
August 2, 1944
I received your letter of July 20 on the 30th so they are doing fine coming this way. I suppose by now you know that I am in France. Have not done anything as yet but will in the near future. Received your last two letters, two days apart. I heard from our quarter master that Ralph was home and the next day I heard from you. His wife wrote to him and said that Ralph and Dorothy had gone out to the coast. I suppose that he was to see the girls before he came to see you or did he leave it till he after. I suppose he would leave it till he had seen you. Am glad that you were not so lonely as you thought you would be while the boys were away. Am also glad, that you are seeing a lot of the coast. It is really grand. If and when we get back, I am young to make my home there. That is if the army does not offer me something better. They seem to be doing a lot for the boys that are back there now. The only thing is the ones that are back there first will get the best of everything and we will have to do with what is left. The weather over hear has been grand for almost a week. The sun is shining and there is a nice cool breeze blowing. Nothing like the English weather. It is more like Canadian weather. The only thing I don’t like is the infernal noise. It is either aircraft or artillery. The artillery is the worst. We have a battery sitting just behind us and do they ever make a racket at night. It is almost impossible to sleep at night. Although I seem to manage alright. As you know that you could knock the house down while I was asleep and I would not know anything about it. We had a very peaceable day today, I have done my washing and written two letters, one to the people near camp and one to you. I will write to Lois this evening as it does not look like anything is going to happen. So there’s very little to tell you. I will sign off for now.
All my love,
P.S. The cigarettes are coming through swell now. I have a little surplus built up now. Just received July’s. Sorry to hear that you have a hard time finding a place to stay in Vancouver. It is too bad that you can not buy a place, Glad to hear that Charlie liked his holiday. Well that is all for now. With love to all.