Witness to War: Saturday May 5, 1917

Private Raymond Duval, MM, was a soldier of the 14th Battalion (Royal Montreal Regiment) CEF who served overseas during the last two years of the First World War. He participated in some of the fiercest fighting seen by Canadians during the war and was decorated for bravery at Passchendaele. Determined to preserve his memories of the First World War, he maintained a daily record of his experiences. Here is what he wrote precisely 100 years ago today:

Saturday May 5, 1917:Laurence Duval came for me and he, his mother and I went for an auto trip around St Mary’s, etc. Beautiful trip. Then we came back to Aunt Naomi’s for dinner and chatted till time to go. Fell in love with Aunt Naomi she was awful kind. Then Stanley his wife and I went to the dock and I met Laurence there then after seeing good life got on a boat and I’ve set sail, about 7:30pm. Got to [?] Ward got aboard and we came on together.

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The RMR Foundation thanks Natalie Dyck for generously sharing her publication of “The Diary and Memoir of Private Raymond Duval” in order for us to be able to share his story with you 100 years on. You can learn more about Private Duval here.

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