September 27, 1943

September 27, 1943

Dear Mom + Dad,

Well I am sorry I haven’t wrote sooner, as you can see by my address [Shannan note: the address is Camp Hill Military Hospital] where I am and you can tell by my writing what’s wrong. Remember I think in my last letter I told you my arm was sore, well it was blood poison. Nothing to worry about, they caught it in time. I have been here since Friday afternoon, I guess I will be here for a week or two more. It’s not too bad, all they do is bath my arm and give me blood tests. I am a bed patient, they won’t let me out of bed for anything. You should see my beard, I haven’t shaved since I came in. I haven’t had any visitors either, that’s the hardest part, lying here watching everybody else on visitors day.

I am broke and down to my last bit of tobacco and this is the last stamp so could you please send me a bit.

I won’t be able to write for a while so could you please tell Marg that  my arm is sore and I can’t write, give her my address and maybe she will write me without me writing her first.

I guess you won’t get this letter until about Thursday so I hope you answer as soon as you get it. I got the $2 last week and I sure  needed it.

Well my arm is getting tired so I will close for now hoping you will answer soon.

Love

Gord

[Shannan Note: found some interesting things about the hospital that Gord was at. After the Battle of Somme in 1916, The Commission realized they were not adequately prepared to handle a high number of wounded. In 1917, The Commission very quickly build Camp Hill in Halifax, the first military hospital for convalescing soldiers. For more on Canada’s Military Hospital history, go here: http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/steannes-hospital/about-us/history]

August 24th, 1943

August 24th, 1943

Dear Mom and Dad,

Just a few lines to let yous  know I am okay and I am sorry I didn’t write sooner and hope you didn’t worry about me. Well, I’m back in A23 again, the place where I first took my training on the Bofars. Waugh and I are back taking a course for 3 weeks. There is 16 of us and we are stuck in a hut full of frogs…French and is it ever awful.

This course is pretty hard but it’s interesting. Where is Ted, do you know if he is still here?

They say we are going to get our furlough after we are through here, I hope so.

Send my mail to the same place because I have to go in and get my pay. I won’t be able to write again until payday so don’t worry about me.

If you have any spare change or stamps could you please send me a bit.

I am sticking this letter in with Waugh’s so you give his to May.

Well that’s all for tonight.

Lots of hugs and kisses
Gord
The East End Kid

[Shannan Note: I know things have slowed  down a little recently, life has been a special kind of crazy so it’s been tough to keep up with multiple letters a week, but I hope to get things picked back up soon! Thanks for sticking around! In other news, the coolest thing about doing project is when relatives I didn’t even know existed find the blog and reach out. That happened today (Hi Al!) and it totally makes the work worth it. – Shannan]

Aug 24

July 24th, 1943

July 24th, 1943

Dear Mom + Dad,

Just a few lines to let you know I got the 5 dollars okay and thanks a lot. I was broke, all I had was 1 cent and it was a lucky one. I just got two letters this morning from you and Bin so I will answer them right away but first I just went and talked to the Sargt. and if you will send this month’s cheque I can come home for 3 days. It’s not very long but I sure would love to get home…that’s if you don’t need the money. And if you can send it, write and let me know Air Mail and then when you get it, cash it and send it by registered letter or any way possible. I could be home by the end of August.

I seen Demps yesterday and was I ever glad he didn’t go with the rest. All the guys I took my basic training with are gone, lucky guys.

When you send the money, you can expect a telegram saying “Be Home 10:00, Union Station. Love, Gord” so be looking for it, you and Dad, Bin and Marg.

Well, this is all for today, write again tomorrow.

Love Gord.

July 20th, 1943

July 20th, 1943

Just a few lines to let yous know I’ve moved and am at a real place right in the middle of Halifax. All you have to do is walk out the front door, cross the street and walk in the show. You don’t do any work, just guard, eat and sleep.

I got separated from my boy friends by I’ll be able to see them when they come into town on leave. I’ll be able to see Ted more often too. I thought I was going to New Brunswick but I guess I’ll never get out of Nova Scotia.

It’s now 2:30 in the afternoon and I am laying in my bed. I have often dreamt of places like this but I never believed there was one.

I just found out I could get home for 2 days, but it costs $25. Do you think it’s worth it? If so, let me know and I’ll try and get a 6 day pass. I think I’ll get my furlough by the end of next month so shall I wait and see or try and get the pass? I sure would like to get home, even if it’s just for two days.

Well I can’t think of anything else to say except write soon.

Lots of love,

Gord

July 12th, 1943

July 12th, 1943

Dear  Mom + Dad,

Well Mom I just got two letters today from you and Dad and I got the one marked special and was I glad. That three bucks came in handy because I was broke and I didn’t have a cig to my name. The one fellow I was chumming around with got a carton of American cigs and do you think he would give you one, well I’m through with him now I got the money and he is broke so just wait until her asks me for something.

Well I’m still on draft and when I leave and get to my new camp I think I will get my furlough right away. I don’t mind waiting now because if I had of went home with Demps I would have had to come back the other day and I would have felt pretty bad.

I remember Art, the one you mentioned in your letter. I seen him quite a bit over at A (23), the reason he got his furlough is because he is going away, and Demps is too.

I’d like to be going with Bruce and Chuckie, I bet they will have a swell time. I hope Pork likes it where he is. I’ll write to him tonight. He should be down here, there is lots of water and it is easier swimming in salt water than fresh water.

I would like to have been at Davies when he met the gang, I sure would like to see them all again. Tell Miss Davies I was asking about her and tell her I’ll see them all pretty soon (I hope).

I haven’t got those snaps yet that you sent to the old address, I don’t know what is wrong with the mail. Sometimes I get them in two days and then sometimes a week. Are very many of them censored, if so is anything ever crossed out?

By the look of Marg’s picture (the one that Bin sent) I think she is a real swell looking girl and she looks as if she has changed too and I’m glad all of yous changed your mind about her. Remember when I first started going with her, yous didn’t think very much of her??

That three dollars came in real handy, so if you send me the odd dollar will be alright. I don’t expect to be home for at least a month so my next cheque will be the one to bring me home. Everybody should be home by then, it will be better anyway because everybody is away at camp now.

Will you do me a favour and buy Sweetipie a present for her birthday because I can’t see anything down here, except when I get home I’ll bring a few souvenirs with me. I’ll be ready waiting for that supper when I get home, and if you can get a brick of ice cream put  that on the menu too.

Well, I guess I’ll start to answer  the other letter now. I’m glad to hear Bob is okay. I hope to see him about January then I will try to take Daddy’s place. I’d like to see Big Ted again too. If I ever do well we will have fun just like the old days. And when I come home, I won’t forget the telegram because I want everybody there and we will have a time. We will walk all the way home just so I can have my feet on Ontario soil.

If you do happen to send me anything, would you send me a package of Craven A cigs? Mrs Davies sells them. I haven’t smoked one since I left Toronto.

Well that’s all for tonight, I will write again soon.
Lots of love to the best mother in the world.

PS: Tell Bin to hurry up and answer my letters.

for Sweetipie

July 10th, 1943

July 10th, 1943

Hello Dad –

I got your letter today so here goes I will try to answer it. Glad to hear you’re okay. I’m in the same way, if you send me anything make it cigs or cookies. I can hardly wait to get one that farm and if you need any ditches dug let me know because that’s all we do.

I don’t mind waiting for my furlough as long as I know I will get it. I am trying to get transferred to field. I haven’t heard anything yet but I’m keeping my fingers crossed. I’m glad to hear Bob is getting along okay, I’d sure like to be over there with him but I guess my time will come soon enough. It’s just like being over, down here so far from home. I got lots of tales to tell when I get home.

How do you like your new job, pretty soft eh, what you do just walk around all dressed? For me, I’d sooner walk around in this uniform, I guess I’m just like you were, I;m trying real hard. But there is the odd time you have to beef, you wouldn’t be a soldier if there wasn’t a bit of beef.

This is a real swell place but it is so far from home, but there is some guys farther than me.

Well that’s all for tonight.

So long,

Gord.

July 1st, 1943

July 1st, 1943

Dear Mom + Dad,

Well mom I’m getting behind in my mail to you but I have no stamps or money so could you send me a bit and if you do could you send it by mail with your letter because the other way I have to go down to Halifax. And I don’t expect to be here very long anyway and a letter would follow me wherever I go.

You tell Marg when that when I come you and Bin and I will go up to the Honey Dew and meet Marg and then we will  go out and have the time of our lives. Tell the kids that when I come home I’ll be so happy I’ll treat them to whatever they want.

And about that holiday on the 1st I didn’t know there was one, we are so far back in the woods we don’t hear about anything.

I can’t think of anything more to say except please write soon and send $1.

Lots of love to the best mother in the world

Gord