Many of the men who joined the Forestry Corps did so out of patriotism. That is made clear by the number who joined up despite their age or with medical restrictions that would have kept them out of the regular Infantry. Not all, though, had such noble motives. James Stuart might well be one such.
Stuart's service record, though only twelve pages long, gives two different names for the man - James Walker or Walter Stuart, and David Penwell. Originally from Chicago, he had served four years in the US Navy before winding up as a lumberjack in the Kootenays. He enlisted in the Forestry Corps on 8 February 1917 - and nine days later, was discharged for misconduct.
An article in the Creston Review indicates that Stuart had been jailed - and presumably discharged from the Forestry Corps - for a fight. While in jail, he was recognised as L.C. Dixon, a man wanted at Cranbrook for writing a bad cheque.