26 Jan 41
Dear Mom & Dad:
Here it is Sunday again and time to drop you another line. Since New Year I've written you one letter a wee, not exactly seven days apart, but some time during the week.
The last letter received from you was mailed Dec 25. I got it last week. And poor Jiggs kicked the bucket. Too bad! thats two of the gang gone, him and shorty, and I am still going stronger than ever, knock on wood. It just shows to go you dosent it. According to theory I should have been the first casualty. I am in a better frame of mind than Jiggs was too. He always lived in dread of something like that happening to him, with one brother dead and another in the annex, he had good grounds for personal worry. No doubt I would have ended up in a manner similar to Jiggs had I not joined the army. I imagined all sorts of things wrong with me, from lungs, heart, kidneys and a few more things: I kept myself in a state of perpetual worry. To consult a doctor was quite out of the question I diagnosed myself to my own satisfaction and all a doctor could do would be to confirm it. The only comfort I could get was from drink. Hence my untemperance habits, which would have grown steadily worse until, in the end I would have shared a fate with either Shorty or Jiggs. It was with that state of mind that I joined the army I use to visualize myself rotting away in a sick bed. Above all that was the thing I hated most about kicking the bucket, anything but that. If I must go, than I go with a flourish. And the queer part of it is that I was in the army and over here a couple months still thinking I had fooled the medical boards. It wasnt until this spring that I started looking round and taking interest in things again. Right now I'm on top of the world so to speak, I take a great interest in my work and love it. I try to instill in the section some of my new found energy and enthusiasm. I try to make out of them great fighters worthy to represent our proud and rugged Canada in the struggle against this tyrant who seeks to destroy us. Being killed is only a secondary consideration in our minds. The essential consideration is to keep the hun from getting a hold of our beaches. If we can gain that objective than we will feel well repaid. You don't need to worry to worry, however, I'll not stick my neck out. We study defence as well as offence and every detail is calculated before hand. So you see I have an even chance of coming back to you, twice as good a man as the one who left when war was declared.
It will soon be supper time so I'll have to quit for this time.
Lots of love to you and Dad