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Date: December 5th 1916
The Ladysmith Chronicle
William Appleby
Newspaper Article

[Published in the newspaper The Ladysmith Chronicle, December 5, 1916]

Pte. William Appleby Writes of His Experiences Throwing Bombs.

The Chronicle has received a very interesting letter from Private William Appleby, a former resident of Ladysmith. Billy left Canada with the 103rd Battalion, but was drafted into a bombing party, and left England for France some time ago. The following extracts are from the letter written to The Chronicle:

“Well, I got here all right and started to work at once on my new job. Believe me, it is some job, too – no special starting time and no particular time for knocking off – just work, that’s all. But there is so much variety that the time flies like wildfire, only when you are on a long sentry or listening post, and then it seems like ten years. The weather is getting pretty cold now, and we have just been issued the long-topped gum boots and fur-lined coats, so that helps some.”

“I am in the bombers now for the battalion. There are about forty-five in one battalion, and we are in the front line most of the day and night, on guard and patrol duties as well, so you can see it is no picnic. Old Fritz doesn’t like the bombers at all, and he puts his machine guns to work if he has any reason to believe that we are in the neighborhood, and, of course, when there is to be any advance we are the people. What, ho, then he humps and Hiney does some awful quick thinking. Since I have been with the 29th there have been very few casualties, only two of the 103rd as far as I know, and they were only wounded, so that is not so bad.”

“I never felt better, only I get pretty well tired out at times, but with a little sleep am ready for a repeater. I think old Fritz is on the slide now for sure. The B.C. boys are the ones to do things up proper.”

“Well, old friend, it is a little early, but I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year. I hope to see you all again next summer, if old Hiney don’t get me, which same I will do my best to prevent.”

“With kindest regards to old Ladysmith friends, I remain,

“Yours sincerely,

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