Ron and Bill Cook and World War 2

After losing his business and his house on 1st NE n the 1930s, Ernest Cook now shares the house at 1037 Clifton with other tenants in addition to his wife Louise and his two sons. Ernest and the first son are working outside the home.   Ernest works as a supervisor with the Provincial Tax Commission and then as a salesman at AA Frost in 1939.  He becomes a sales manager for Arthur A. Frost at 219 High W.  in 1940, working with plumbers and plumbing supplies.  His elder son, Ronald George, (24) is working in 1940 at Beatty Brothers at 29 High St. W., probably selling electric wringer washing machines.

In 1941, Ronald George signs up for the war effort and is listed as “on Active Service”.  He begins dating a young woman named Hazel Elizabeth Whitehead who grew up on a farm near Moose Jaw.  She had been born on Christmas Eve in 1923, so she was 7 years younger than Ron Cook.  When she was turning 19 on Christmas Eve of 1942, there was a wedding in the Cook residence that was well described in the Times-Herald.

LAC. stands for Leading Aircraftman. The groom wears his uniform for the wedding. The groom’s granddaughter generously provided pictures to supplement the description of the wedding from the paper.

Ron Cook on the right is taking his bride to Winnipeg first. Later in the war, he will be serving in Prince Edward Island where many of the radio operators and other air force personnel from Canada and Europe were being trained. The best man, William Henry, will return to Central Collegiate after Christmas, continuing his Grade 10.

I find it hard to imagine 25 guests having tea on the main floor of this house, but that’s what the paper said…along with Christmas decorations and a cake decorated by a 92-year-old grandfather of the bride. The last wedding in the house (faithful readers may recall) was also at Christmas time.  In 1926, the guests were brave enough to have their pictures taken on the front steps.