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I can't help but wonder if it was bravery, that he knew he would die, or if he secretly thought it wasn't going to be him and he wrote the letter thinking that. I don't know. I guess many soldiers write a letter like that and don't think it will be them - heck that could be me. I'd write one, but do I think it will be me? Hell no.
and I guess this young chap was full of bravado and perhaps naive. However, the fact 9 other riflemen had died probably would have made him face the fact he could possibly die. I don't know.
You don't know how brave you are until you go out there I wouldn't imagine. I'm sure most people are full of bravado at the beginning. I'm one of them I'm sure. At least this lad faced that dark possibility in the end in a way that helped to keep his family strong if he was to die. So yeah, I think he managed to put on a brave face. RIP.
^This, minus the "I'm one of them I'm sure." bit. I'm certainly not making any claims over my own bravado (or bravery).