Peterborough family uncovers more than 150 Second World War letters from father and uncle

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Lynne Bork is cherishing a newfound piece of Second World War history this Remembrance Day. She found the letters father and uncle wrote to family members during the war – Nov 11, 2020

A Peterborough woman is trying to determine the best way to preserve dozens of Second World War letters penned by father and uncle.

Lynne Bork says about a year ago her brother was cleaning out their mother’s basement when they discovered a box which contained more than 150 letters written by her father and uncle who fought in Europe during the Second World War.

“My mom said ‘yes I know’ — but no one told us about the letters so it was a big surprise,” said Bork. “I think we are just blessed to have them.”

Read more: Decorated Second World War veteran Joe Sullivan of Peterborough dies at 100

More than 150 letters were in the box, the majority of them written by Bork’s father Thomas Leighton (Bud) Teasdale, who was in the Royal Canadian Armed Service’s tank core and some letters from Bud’s brother Ken who was with the RCASC’s infantry.

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The letters detail much of Bud’s training in Canada before departing to England in 1943. They also shed some details on his and Ken’s exploits overseas including Ken’s efforts to help liberate Holland near the end of the Second World War.

Some details in the letters were scratched out, likely due to security and safety reasons, Bork notes.

Bork said Bud and Ken also got to meet extended family in Northumberland in northeast England.

She said her father rarely talked about the wartime experience.

“I came across some letters that were very emotional,” said Bork, referencing one letter from her father that read “I don’t think anyone in the world can have better parents in the world than you.”

Bork said her father died in 1994 after a career at General Electric in Peterborough. Her mother Denise died in August.

Ken Teasdale, left, and Bud Teasdale, served during the Second World War. Global News Peterborough

The wartime letters are currently in a large binder but Bork is looking for another way to preserve them.

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“I’ve always loved history but I would like somehow to get these letters into a book,” she said. “I don’t know if there’s enough there to write a book about their journey — I’m not a journalist. But somehow they need to be recorded.”

— More to come

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