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Rifleman Edgar Dawson Butler was born on May 9, 1918, in Arkona, Ontario, to parents James and Hannah (“Annie”) Theodoria (née Thornicroft) Butler, part of a large family with eight siblings. On July 13, 1940, he married Gertrude Donna Butler. Prior to his enlistment Butler worked as a farmer.

He enlisted into active service on August 18, 1941, with the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada, Royal Canadian Infantry Corps. Shipping to England in December of 1941, Butler remained there until the Normandy landings in 1944. As part of D-Day operations on June 6, 1944, Butler was with 14 Platoon of Charlie Company near the village of Bernières-sur-mer when he was killed by mortar fire. He is buried at Beny-Sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery, Calvados, France.

Content notes:
The letters are written by Butler to his sister Leona (Mrs. John Cadman), of Sarnia, Ont., between November 1941 and May of 1945 . Only twenty-five letters have transcriptions available at this time.

External links:
Rfn. Dawson Butler’s service record (Serv/Reg# B64737) can be viewed/downloaded in pdf format through Library and Archives Canada.
Burial information is available at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
A memorial page honouring Dawson can be visited online at the Canadian Virtual War Memorial.

Collection Contents

Letters (44)