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World War One, Coincidences and Family Birthdays



This recent post fits today’s Daily Prompt: Home as home and family go hand-in-hand!

Talk about coincidences! This Sunday, September 22nd, 2013, will be the 99th anniversary of the day my grandfather signed his attestation papers at Valcartier, Quebec in 1914 agreeing to serve overseas in the Canadian Expeditionary Force (CEF) in what we now refer to as World War One (before WW II it was the Great War). As the section of his attestation paper below will … dare I say it … attest. He is listed as being 20, but in September he was still 19 and would only turn 20 in November.

Meanwhile on that very same day in London, England my grandmother was celebrating (I like to think she was celebrating, but maybe just marking) her 21st birthday – although there is some question about her age it is usually assumed by family members that she was two years older than my grandfather. Little did either of them know what the next few years held for them, not the least of which was that they would meet and marry and move/return to Canada to start a family.

The picture at right of my grandparents was taken on the street I live on now. My grandfather’s right lens is blackened as he lost most of the sight from shrapnel.

One more little coincidence – September 22nd is also my birthday. Yes indeed, I was a gift to my grandmother (my late father’s birthday was September 21st, so it would seem I was determined to be someone’s gift).

To sum up then, September 22 is the day my grandfather attested to serve overseas, his future wife was born on that day as was the youngest of his grandchildren.


Logo_3DCMontreal is a Montreal writer born and raised who likes to establish balance and juxtapositions; a bit of this and a bit of that. a dash of Yin and a soupçon of Yang, some Peaks and Freans and maybe a bit of a sting in the tail! Please follow DC on Twitter @DCMontreal and on Facebook, and add him on Google+