The son of Sgt. Ernest and Mrs. Barnes, First Kent Regt. and Leona Barnes of 41 Main St., Wallaceburg, ON. Bill also had a sister Wren Etta Barnes of the RCN (WD) was expected to be home to greet her brother. Don, his brother was training with the RCNVR. Prior to the war Pte. Barnes was employed at the Wallaceburg Brass factory.
Frank joined the Essex Scottish in April of 1940 and had gone overseas in July of that year. He was reported as of 24 August, 1944. Reported as a casualty on the Dieppe Raid in the Windsor Star of 16 September, 1942. The WN 8/10/42(P) reported that the International Red Cross at Geneva had confirmed that Frank was a POW in Germany as a result of the raid on Dieppe. He had been wounded on the Dieppe beach where he was captured.
The WN 12/11/42 in an article “Letters To Prisoners of War” gave instructions that each letter or parcel should be addressed
Prisoner of War Post,
Service des Prisionerd de Guerre.
In this case
A-22177 Pte. Wm. Barnes, Prisoner of War No. 42989, Stalag 9 C, Germany.
The WN 6/07/44 (P) reported on the welcome home of Bill who had been a POW since the raid on Dieppe in 1942. The CDN 8/06/44 reported that Pte. Barnes age 22 years was along with Pte. Pte Roy N. Kett of Chatham were the first of the invalided POW to return home. A photo of the happy home-coming included a examination of a sample of POW “Bread” consisting of potatoe peelings and straw. Pte. Barnes returned to Canada aboard the S.S. Gripsholm.
“It’s good to be home. The town’s street lights look good to me”. Jerry the family dog who was demanding a bit of attention at the family home on Main St., in Wallaceburg.
Bill was reported to be more or less a bit nervous, a condition evidently caused by the long t rip out of Germany to Marseilles, then by ship to Barcelona, where he boarded the S.S. Gripsholm. The voyage to Belfast, Ireland, was uneventful, also the trip across the Atlantic to New York where he arrived three days ago. Then aboard a crack passenger train to to Montreal and via C.N.R. to Toronto, London Chatham and then home. He was greeted by his father Sgt. Ernie Barnes in London.
There was a cordial greeting for Pte. Barnes in Chatham from a crowd of his friends from Wallaceburg. Mayor J. Eric MacDonald spoke a brief welcome along with remarks from the Chamber of Commerce and Canadian Legion.
Bill gave praise for the weekly parcels that came from the Red Cross. “if it hadn’t been for those parcels many of us would have starved”. He also was very grateful to the employees of the Dominion Glass Co. for the monthly cigarettes and the other folks in Wallaceburg who also sent ‘smokes’.
Someone happened to mention baseball and Bill wanted to know where he could see a game. H had his wish a couple of nights later in Steinhoff Park in Wallaceburg. Photo of father and mother greeting their son CDN 9/06/44
Reported returned from overseas service attending a Wallaceburg Kinsmen ‘Welcome Home’ dinner CDN. 24/01/45.
William married Betty Frances (nee Mummery). (date unknown