Royal Air Force Commission stamped Temporary to Wylie Burke
Saunders dated 15 February 1919. It was not usual for
commissions to be issued this soon after the war as so many
experienced pilots were surplus to the RAF's needs.
Britain declared war on Germany the 4th
of August 1914 and a 25 year old mechanic named Wylie Burke
Saunders volunteered for the Canadian Expeditionary Force by the
12th of August and his unit set sail for Europe on the
4th of October aboard the S.S. Ruthemia.
Saunders was born 6 November 1888 in Kingston, Nova Scotia.
His initial medical boards noted without further comment that he
had a scar from a bullet wound 2” above his right ankle. He
joined the 17th Battalion of the Nova Scotia Regiment.
Initially a private, No. 46078, in the 1st C.M.G.
Bde., on discharge he was an A/Sergt in the 1st
Canada MM Gun Bde. He was appointed flight cadet effective 17
August 1918 in the
Imperial Cadets Flight, though is records also show that he
commenced the cadet course 17 March 1918. His serial number
in the RAF was 360550 with rank of Flight Cadet.