Captain S. H. Williams, Military Cross, was the author of “Stand to Your Horses”. (See Sam Williams Parts I and II). Williams worked for the T. Eaton Company in Winnipeg before the start of World War I. After war broke out, he enlisted in the Fort Garry Horse, and in due course was commissioned. The Fort Garrys at that time were in England, and Williams, who was training in Winnipeg, could not get a berth to join his regiment. They were not actively in the front lines at that time, and did not need more men. The Strathcona’s, however, did need men and were in action. Williams to his credit resigned his commission, reenlisted as a private in the Straths, and got overseas almost immediately.
He served with great distinction for the rest of the war, earning the nickname “Lucky Luke”, as mentioned earlier, as he came through the whole conflict without becoming a casualty—a real rarity.
Tom Mackay, my father, also enlisted in Winnipeg but after Williams, and not very willingly. For a fictionalized version of how my father came to be in the Strathcona’s, see my novel Soldier of the Horse. Dad and Williams knew each other well—perhaps too well—but that story is for another day. Oddly enough, both worked for Eaton’s after the war, and had some minimal correspondence. But during the Strath’s battles in France, they served well together.