One of the opportunities for researching soldiers is the fact that many soldiers that enlisted often enlisted with their “chums” at the same enlistment office. In an article about researching soldiers it pointed out that since the service numbers were often assigned sequentially then if someone checked the proceeding and preceding service numbers and they had the same date there is a good chance that all those men knew each other.
In the case of my Grandfather when I did the initial research I checked the 2 number proceeding his service number (53902) and 2 numbers after and stopped as there appeared to be only one soldier that enlisted that day.
Luckily my mother (William Robb Dewar’s 2nd child) remembered a family friend with the surname Esplin. The remembrance was that this gentleman, William Esplin, as a good friend of her father’s and that they served together in the 18th Battalion. They both joined on the same date and in the same town, Galt, Ontario.
As evidenced in his attestation papers he joined on the same day as my Grandfather, October 26, 1914, which indicates that one needs to dig a little deeper into the attestation papers to uncover these insights. Thanks to my mother’s memory of William Esplin another soldier is recognized and the story of my Grandfather is filled out a little bit more.
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