On 23 September 1940, McGuinness was seriously injured in a naval accident when his ship ran aground; McGuinness’ leg was broken when the ship’s tow cable snapped and he spent the next 11 months convalescing at Camp Hill Hospital in Halifax, Nova Scotia. While in hospital McGuinness contracted scarlet fever and diphtheria and developed osteomyelitis as a complication of his femur facture. McGuinness returned to Winnipeg to continue his convalescence at Deer Lodge Hospital and was ultimately discharged from the navy in 1941.
Scope and Content
Photograph shows Fred McGuinness in traction in a hospital bed, possibly at Camp Hill Hospital.
Hubert Clayton Weidenhamer was born near Dand, Manitoba in 1926. He was raised in Dand and attended school in the Dand Consolidated School District. Weidenhamer enlisted in the Canadian Army in 1943. He became a member of the Priness Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry. Following training in Canada and England Weidenhamer was sent to Italy. He was badly wounded in battle in mid-September and died of his injuries in November 1944 at age 21. He was buried in the Ancona Military Cemetery, Ancona Italy.
These records were in the possession of Bea Chapin (née Weidenhamer) following their creation in the 1940s until they were donated to the S. J. McKee Archives in January 2011.
Scope and Content
Collection consists of correspondence from Hubert Clayton Weidenhamer to his sister Bea. The letters begin in the spring of 1943. Weidenhamer had enlisted in the Canadian Army in January 1943. His letters detail his induction into miltary life in Fort Garry, Winnipeg and his training experience in Canada, principally at Camp Ipperwash, Lambton County, Ontario. He relates his experience of travels on leave to Detriot. Weidenhamer left Canada from Halifax in late 1943 and arrived in Great Britain in December for additional military training. In England, maintaining his morale, waiting for deployment, and coming to terms with British currency were challenges. Transferred to the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, Weidenhamer was deployed to Italy in March 1944. The letters dating from March 1944 to September relate in oblique fashion his's experience of military life on the Italian frontier as the Canadian Army fought its way north - "hard fighting" - and the impact of the war on Italian cities and the countryside. He was "proud" of his conduct in action. Weidenhamer's last letter is dated September 11, 1944.
Collection also includes correspondence on Weidenhamer's behalf from his military Chaplin; two press clippings dealing with his military career, and several facimiles of telegrams and correspondence from the Canadian government officials related to Weidenhamer's death and burial in Italy.
Mildred (Mollie) Norton Kellet was born April 5, 1914, in Birmingham, England to Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Travers. At the age of 18, she joined the Cadbury Brothers Co. as a contometer. In 1942, she married George Crawford Kellet Jr. Mollie and George Kellet had two children together: Patricia (b. 1944) and Ian (b. 1949). In February of 1944, Mollie and her husband relocated to Manchester where George Kellet worked as an accountant.
Following World War II, the Kellets emigrated to Winnipeg, Canada. Mollie remained a mother and homekeeper until 1954, when she was hired as a secretary for Mitchell, Green, and Menouk Lawyers. She was also employed by The Bay and in the securities department of Montreal Trust Co, where she was the manager until 1966. She retired at age 65, but was recalled by the company to work until 1984, when she was 70 years old. In 1990, Mollie moved to Brandon to be closer to her daughter, Pat Alvested. Due to complications from surgery and a weak heart, Mollie Kellet passed away on January 31, 1999.
George Crawford Kellet Jr. was born to George Crawford Kellet Sr. and Lizzie Auld Halliday Kellet on July 16, 1911, in Glasgow, Scotland. An only child, he attended private school, and in 1933, at the age of 21, he was the youngest Chartered Accountant graduate in Britain. At some point between 1933 and his marriage to Mildred (Mollie) Norton in 1942, George joined the British army; while with the army his job was to receive the orders concerning army accounting and process them for soldiers in the field.
George left the army after the war and sailed with his wife and daughter on the Mauretania for Canada. Upon settling in Winnipeg he worked for Family Fair. In 1956 and 1957, he continued to work while setting up his own accounting firm, Kellet & Co. He was also diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1956. In 1971, George's health forced him to retire. Mollie continued to work at this time. Five years later she was unable to care for him adequately and he moved to a nursing home. In 1985, at age 74, George Kellet passed away.
In January 2000, Pat Alvestad, the Kellets' daughter, donated this fonds to the McKee Archives.
Scope and Content
The records contained within the Mollie Kellet fonds are contributions from both Mollie and her husband George. Included are: a collection of handwritten recollections by Mollie Kellet concerning her experiences during the Second World War (Mollie had been living in London and experienced life under German bombing); a document from WWI, presumably from her father, who was a veteran of this war; and records acquired by George Kellet during his service in the Second World War concerning the practical arrangements made to support troops following the 1944 D-day invasion of Nazi Europe. Marked "top secret," these records set out procedures for paying and provisioning the invading army.