“One of a party of sappers who were proceeding to work on the night
“One of a party of sappers who were proceeding to work on the night of July 3rd 1916, when just outside the ruins of Ypres, they encountered heavy shelling, several shells bursting close to the party, Sapper Cunningham was hit in the right breast and instantly killed.” (Casualty Report) Buried Brandhoek Military Cemetery, 2 miles east of Poperinghe, Belgium.
16-08-07 - Letter from my Grandfather to my Grandmother: "Yes Dear, we have lost F. Cunningham [Francis Bradley Cunningham, # 541720]. He was my last friend, and one of the most respected men in the Company. I have missed him very much. I was very sorry to hear your cousin [Lorne Van Luven?] had been killed. These are the hardest parts of the war to bear. However Dear, I have great [hopes] of this slaughter being over in a couple of months.
This last letter of yours seems to be running between the lines with worry. Cut it out Dear. Just go through with the day duties and get up and go places and have as good a time as possible, as a person cannot cross over a bridge till they come to it. Just imagine that if all the men in France were to get out and worry their heads off we should all die of lonesomeness. So its pack up your troubles in your old kit bag and smile, smile, smile. One thing Dear, you will never be able to play enough music for me when I get home. I am thinking of yourself, music, and the good old days we have had, and just longing for their return. But worry is not in my line."
And finally, on 16-08-28 my grandfather wriote: "Yes Dear, Francis [Francis Cunningham] and I were together, and have been since leaving Ottawa. I would like to be more explicit and tell you about everything as I am sure there must be very little satisfaction in receiving letters of this kind, but it can’t be helped. Now Dear if at any time you should not receive a letter or card from me for any length you have not the slightest need to worry, as I expect we will receive an order not to write any letters for some time, and I might not be able to get any cards."