I thought him older but the note on the back of this RPPC reveals he was 15 and a half at the time the picture was taken. Must be the classic menswear and the serious expression.
He’s wearing a coat that still would be stylish today. On his head a russian style fur hat and yes, this is a swastika tie pin on him. I like pictures that prompt me to do research. This pre-dates by two decades Hitler’s defamation of the symbol. The swastika bears so many meanings and was used in surprising ways.
Looking at the style of house behind him the boy was American, and this is not common knowledge, but apart from being an ancient Hindu symbol of good luck, the swastika has U.S. roots too.
The Navajo tribe used it (how they came about to using it would be interesting to find out too), and the 45th American National Guard infantry unit adopted the symbol in the 1910s as a tribute to Native Americans. That’s right, they wore a swastika as their patch, at least until Hitler unfortunately adopted it in the 30s. They then replaced it with a Thunderbird. Also, aviators used to pin it on as a lucky charm.
Why Raymond wore it? For the same reason mentioned: a good luck charm.
Raymond may look all grown up on this picture, but when you still count your age in half years…!
RPPC: AZO 1904-1918