Charlie MacDonald

He was foraging for wine in a restricted area when he was hit in the wrist with shrapnel.

The family of Charles “Charlie” Raymond MacDonald remember him as a “typical Scot”—“He was a fastidious man who also drank too much at times,” recalled Shawn MacDonald, the grandson of Charlie. He loved drinking so much that it’s what got him wounded while on duty in France or Belgium. He was foraging for wine in a restricted area when he was hit in the wrist with shrapnel. To avoid getting in trouble, he lied and and told his superiors that he had slipped and fallen on broken glass.

He enlisted at age eighteen on September 23, 1914 from Quebec and served as a as a gunner and later as a dispatch rider.

“I remember him as kindly but a little aloof,” said Shawn. “Dad tells me he was a strict disciplinarian who also had a good sense of humor, and that he was a fine athlete in his youth.” His sense of humour is what caught Adele Cullen’s eye when they were travelling on the same train. Just back from the war and still in uniform, Charlie was horsing around with other soldiers while on a train ride to Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, from Souris, P.E.I. “Apparently my grandmother thought he was a bit full of himself, though she must have been attracted,” said Shawn. Charlie and Cullen later married and lived in Charlottetown with their five kids— Joe, Al, Shirley, June and George Bernard. Cullen became a potato inspector while Charlie worked at various jobs and ended his career as a member of the Canadian Corps of Commissionaires. He received the 1914-1915 Star and Victory Medal from the First World War, plus two medals from the Second World War, and one from the commissionaires. During the Second World War Charlie tried to go overseas again but instead spent the war as a service member on the air base in Summerside, P.E.I.

He was born in Souris, P.E.I. in 1896 and died there in 1975 from complications due to emphysema. He is buried in the Charlottetown Catholic Cemetery next to his wife, who passed away about nine years later.

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