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May 8, 2012

Tribute to Ira Harry Huehn WW1 Soldier in PPCLI

Ira Harry Huehn was born 10 June 1895 in Toronto. He enlisted in the CEF (Canadian Expeditionary Force) on August 15, 1915 when he was just 20 years old.

He gave his mother, Mrs. H. E. Huehn as his next-of-kin. He was a bank clerk and had served 3 months with the Queen's Own Rifles before enlisting.

Ira was sent to the PPCLI (Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry) which co-incidentally is the unit my youngest son served in as an infantry soldier from 2000-2005.

Sadly Ira was killed in action at Sanctuary Wood less than a year after he went to war. His death is recorded as 4 June 1916

A search of Ancestry revealed that Ira's parents were Henry and Minnie and that he had older sisters Ethel and Lydia

photo found by Annette F.
We have Ira's Death Medal, Silver Cross (see photo on left) and WW1 Medal.
Ira's father died in October 1914 and his poor mother lost her husband and only son in a two year span. 

This blog post is meant as a tribute to Ira and all those who fight and have fought for our country.

Ira Huehn's Death Medal

Ira Huehn's WW1 Medal - front

Ira Huehn's WW1 Medal - back

Canada, CEF Burial Registers, First World War, 1914-1919 

Sadly Ira's body was never recovered for burial. I often think of how his mother and sisters must have grieved, not only for the loss of Ira but thinking of how he was never laid to rest.


Annette Fulford said...

There is a wonderful photo or Ira in the book, Letters from the front; being a record of the part played by officers of the Bank in the Great War, 1914-1919 at the Internet Archive . It was published by the Bank of Commerce in 1920.

Annette Fulford said...

In the second book published by the Bank of Commerce, also at the Internet Archive, there is a short biography of Ira on page 215:
Letters from the front. Being a record of the part played by officers of the Bank in the great war, 1914-1919 (n.d.], Volume 2

Anglers Rest said...

A lovely tribute to Ira.

Michelle said...

A wonderful tribute. Thank you for sharing.

Tom Reitz said...

Ira is my 2nd cousin, twice removed ... not a close relationship. But in 1916 he send two post cards and one letter to his Cousin Edith - who was my Great Aunt. Edith kept a scrap book which includes Ira's post cards and letter from France, plus copies of the correspondence from the military to Ira's mother upon his death.

Tom Reitz said...

Ira's letter to his Cousin Edith ...

January 24/16

Dear Cousin Edith: -
Was very glad on arriving back at Camp to-day to find a letter from you in my mail. I was lucky to-day received five, and you will have to pardon me if I don't write as long a one as I received from you as you see all I receive I have to answer and I have quite a correspondence and then too I can't tell you any news as the Miltary Postal Laws are very strict and any information or news to the outside world would be severely punished, such as telling you how many troops there are here or how many batteries of guns or how large the guns are or where I am now, so you can see there is not much I can tell you. I am quite well an dmy operation of last Summer doesn't bother me at all. I was weighed lately and am 159. a good weight for me. France is a nice country truly the people seem so funny and such odd houses and horses pull such huge loads in this country on such odd wagons. I could sure write a small book on what I have seen. However I'll have to wait till I see you and then it will be easier telling you than writing.

2nd sheet
I can imagine what a good time you had at Xmas. It was a Xmas for me which I will never forget. Xmas in France in a camp and among a strange people and whose language I can't understand or talk, believe me it was something to remember.

Tell George Bramm for me that I received his cakes and thank him for me. I seem to think I wrote him but I'm not sure. my mind isn't as clear as it was.

This certainly is an awful war. I wish the people of Canada could be in France for an hour and see what the war means to this country.

Believe me there is no one wishes this war was over more than the soldier who is engaged in it. but I guess there will be "something doing" this Spring and then we shall see.

Remember me to all the Berlin folks and sometime ago I rec'd a huge box of bon-bons and I want to thank whoever sent them very much. they were delicious and very much appreciated. Will write soon again

your loving cousin

Please excuse any errors or omissions as I am not reading this over.

Lorine McGinnis Schulze said...

Tom, I am pleased you found Ira's blog post and thank you for sharing his letter. It is so sad to think of all those lost live