President's Message

HKVCA President photoIt has been a while since our last newsletter. We are going through a period when it is difficult to get volunteers. We are fortunate to have a new newsletter editor whose expertise and “drive” holds great promise for a dynamic newsletter. I’m certain his editorial will give you a glimpse of his talent and plans.

That said, we have been busy with a number of things, one of which you will be pleased to read is the design and production of a flag for our association. Military protocol requires the retirement of the flag when the HKVA is dissolved.

Additionally, changes to the Charitable Organization Act necessitated we review all our policies and procedures and make any changes necessary. This has been completed and now we are in the process of auditing our operations to ensure we are in compliance with all requirements.

You will see elsewhere in this newsletter a request for Board of Directors nominations. We were successful last year in bringing three new people to the Board, The insertion of new blood is critical to the success of our association. (Note: for online readers, the documents can be found here. -ed)

The regional representation is currently: Atlantic region – 1 member; Quebec region – 2 members; Ontario region – 4 members; Prairie region – 3 members; and finally the BC region – 1 member. This is a reasonable representation based on the numbers of members from each region, but this should not be the deciding factor. There is no “politics” in our association, simply working together to fulfill our mandate – public awareness of the Hong Kong story, especially to the youth of our country.

I am taking this opportunity to let you know that I shall not be running for re-election. That said, I am not leaving for I shall always be involved in one way or another until I am physically no longer able to do so. The HKVCA is my “baby”. Having been around since it was a gleam in Phil Doddridge’s eye, I have worked with others to bring it to its present state. But it is time for more new blood, more younger thought and drive. I leave knowing it is in good hands with a solid future.

I encourage you to become more involved with the activities in your respective regions. There are many ways we can honour our veterans and spread the knowledge of the Hong Kong story. Perhaps you have an idea which should be pursued. All ideas should be considered, so please pass them along to either the Board of Directors or your Region Council by email or post: Our mailing address is

1861 Robertson Road,
Suite 164,
Ottawa, ON, K2H 1B9

Keep well,


HKVA President's Message

Photo of Phil Doddridge

Greetings from “The Gaspe’’. I hope that our new editor will not object to these few words of welcome to the HKVCA.

I have come to know Tom over the past few years and I am most impressed with his enthusiasm for military history of Canadians in World Wars I and II.

I wish him well and I feel certain that Wasureru-nai will go from success to success under his guidance.

One of the new features of the newsletter that Tom promises is an article on one of the Canadian defenders of Hong Kong who didn’t return to Canada in 1945. I hope that he will receive submissions from others. I have told him that I will contribute as often as he wishes and as long as I am able.

That will be all for this time. Be good to each other and May God Bless.

Philip Doddridge

From The Editor

"We will honour your history, your traditions, and your sacrifice as if it were our own" -
Lt. Col. J. Chouinard, Commanding Officer, Les Voltigeurs de Québec.

A few weeks back I received an e-mail message from HKVCA member Nancy Doddridge. The gist of which was that the association was looking for an editor for Wasureru-Nai, the association’s newsletter, and she asked if I might be interested in helping out. After giving it some thought, I accepted to take on the challenge. My goals for this first edition were fairly modest; deliver the newsletter by 15th of June, and add Remembrance Corner column. As we move forward, we will look at bringing improvements to Wasureru-Nai with each successive edition, and strive to gravitating to a fully electronic format over time.

Quebec City was the site of an historic event on May 7th weekend. Les Voltigeurs de Québec, a militia unit which was celebrating its 154th anniversary, held an impressive series of ceremonies (more on that in an article by Lucette Mailloux-Muir) in which they commemorated the participation of the Royal Rifles of Canada in the Battle of Hong Kong, and committed to perpetuating the memory of the unit. The lengths to which Les Voltigeurs went in order to show their respect to the RRC was quite touching. To see Sgt. Gander and a section of young soldiers wearing Royal Rifles of Canada uniforms, complete with period .303 Lee Enfield rifles, march through the streets of Old Quebec to the beat of the regimental band ahead of Les Voltigeurs was a sight to behold. First class job by Les Voltigeurs de Québec.

Tom Eden


poppy for remembrance

Last Post

Les Canivet- RCOC, 30 May

Eric Batley- RRC, 16 May

Arthur Schwartz- WG, 15 Nov

Harry Hawryshok- WG, 15 Nov

Bruce Cadoret, RRC, E30538, 20 Oct

In Memoriam

Widow of Ernest John Whitfield, WG, Elizabeth Margaret Evelyn Whitfield, on April 6, 2016 at the age of 94

Brenda Carrier, daughter of RRC /HKV Arnold Carrier, Belledune, NB Nov. 4, 1955 - Jan. 16, 2016

Kathleen Murray, sister of Harry and John Robert Kelso, both KIA in Hong Kong, on March 24

Ruby Delilah Cooper, wife of Fred Cooper, RRC, on Feb 26 at the age of 96 years

From Muriel McDavid: my mother passed away on December 15, 2015. My father was Clifford Edward McDavid, HKPOW, Royal Rifles of Canada. Dad predeceased mom on August 3, 2008

Evelyn Smith, widow of Raymond A Smith, RRC, E29841 on October 31

Remembrance Corner

An account of the fate of Reynald Murphy, a member of 16 Platoon, “D” Coy, RRC, who was killed on the first day in action.

Reynald was nineteen years old. He was born and raised in New Richmond, one of the 53 of us who joined the Royal Rifles in 1940 along with his brother, Leo.

I have reported elsewhere how, on December 21, we climbed through the water catchment to the top of Bridge Hill under the leadership of Major Morris Parker. We reached our objective high above Tai-Tam Reservoir and took up our position facing the advancing  Japanese on the bridge across the Reservoir.

The Japanese had mules and armoured vehicles along with six-inch mortars which they fired at us at point-blank range.

Things got pretty hectic and our defense with only Lee Enfield rifles and Bren Guns did little to halt their advance.

Photo of Sai Wan Cemetery

Sai Wan Cemetery Hong Kong

Reynald was one of the casualties, being struck with rifle bullets. He died beside his brother Leo. (Ed. Leo Murphy, E30638. Born 1919. Died 2001.)

Being outnumbered and out-gunned, we were forced to retreat, carrying a wounded Jim Darrah who had suffered a broken leg.

Reynald was the first casualty from “D” Company before surrender. There were many others.

(View Reynald Murphy's Individual Report on our 'C' Force web site -ed)

Les Voltigeurs de Québec Honours Veterans of the Battle of Hong Kong

Saturday, May 7, was a big day for the Voltigeurs Regiment of Quebec City. The Regiment was celebrating three major events: the 154th anniversary of the formation of the Regiment, the 150th anniversary of the formation of the regimental band, and the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Hong Kong, which took place from December 8 to 25, 1941.

Parade marching in Quebec City

The main event this year for the Voltigeurs was to honour the soldiers of the Royal Rifles of Canada who fought, were wounded, and died while defending Hong Kong Island 75 years ago.  For you veterans of the Royal Rifles of Canada, rest assured that your unit and the memory of your sacrifice will be protected and honoured as it is for Les Voltigeurs de Québec.

The day started early with a mass and commemoration at the Notre-Dame de Québec Cathedral-Basilica followed by a lunch at the Cercle de la Garnison de Québec, parade in the Old Quebec to the Plaines d’Abraham for the Inspection of the Regiment, transfer of the regimental sergeant-major and the unveiling of the commemorative Royal Rifles of Canada Plaque.

During the inspection, Honorary president of the celebrations, of the Canadian Forces Brig. Gen. Stephane Lafaut, OMM, CSM. CD greets “Gander” of the day.

During the inspection, Honorary president of the celebrations, of the Canadian Forces Brig. Gen. Stephane Lafaut, OMM, CSM. CD greets “Gander” of the day.

I would like to personally, thank all our HKVCA Regional Directors and their people who took the time and made the efforts to advise and invite their veterans and  members to Quebec City for this memorable event.  We had family members representing their dads from the east coast to the west.  I will not name anyone in fear of missing someone, but you know you were there, again, thank you all for your presence.  Many brought family memorabilia which was greatly appreciated and also much enjoyed with great interest by many of Les Voltigeurs.

Unveiling of the RRC Plaque

Unveiling of the RRC Plaque

I would also like to again thank John Russell, son of RRC Albert Russell and Ontario member, for his marvelous job carrying our Hong Kong Banner during the parade through the streets of Old Quebec to the Plaines.  He brought great honour to his dad Albert and his two uncles.

Due to timing, distances and health problems many of our veterans were present in spirit.  Last minute cancellations due to health left our Philip Doddridge “holding down the fort” in the name of all of his comrades.  Phil was very emotional, gave many interviews, greeted many family members and all in all was quite busy. Les Voltigeurs were very interested in talking to him.

group of the family/guests present at the unveiling

Some of the group of the family/guests present at the unveiling

On Sunday morning, Tom Eden personally guided many remaining guests to the Morrin Center for a tour of the exhibit on “Hong Kong and the Home Front”.  Many could not extend their stay but will be back during the summer to visit.  (the exhibit runs from March 25, 2016-January 1, 2017, 44 Chaussée des Ecossais, Quebec City)  

When the reconstruction of the Armoury is completed, Les Voltigeurs plan an official opening of the “Home of the Royal Rifles” with the rededication of the RRC Plaque in it’s proper location, exhibit cases, pictures, paintings etc on the Battle of Hong Kong and the RRC.

photo of participants present at the unveiling

(More photos are available on our Gallery web site - ed)

Memories by Gerry Gerrard

Photo of Gerry Gerrard I was reminded recently of a couple of amusing incidents that happened while in POW camp and thought they may be of interest. Due to the heavy bombing, we were moved from our Camp 3d Kowasaki near Yokahama for the last six months of the war to the iron mines in the mountains at Ohassa. I don’t know how I was picked for a job in the blacksmith shop. There were five fires in the shop and I was the only prisoner. Half of the building was a machine shop and I was told the Americans were running the place as all the Jap machinists were called to the military. I was not allowed into their end of the building nor did I see them coming or going to and from work.

My job was to swing the various hammers as the blacksmith worked the red hot steel and on this day, we started a big job making a connecting rod for a donkey engine. We started with a piece of steel 3 inches in diameter and 4 feet long, of course, this was too big for an open fire so we had to build up the fire then put one end of the steel in the flames then build an oven around it with wet coal dust. It looked like a beehive. Periodically, we had to pull the steel out to stoke the fire. This took four men. While waiting for the fire to build, we were making small hammer heads out of truck axles. As we were doing this, I noticed a guard came in and was standing close to the steel bar which had just cooled enough to lose its red glow. My boss noticed what I was looking at and gave a smirk as we carried on.

Suddenly there was a great yell from the soldier as he was jumping around trying to hang onto his rifle and get his boots off. The last we saw of him, he was doing the bunny hop out the door. You could say he hot footed it out, of course, the other men in the shop didn’t know what his problem was.

H. (Gerry ) Gerrard RCCS

(Read Gerry's personal account on our web site -ed)

Improving Your Online Reading Experience

Photo of Jim TrickIt seems as though we are all changing our habits with respect to accessing information and staying connected. Portable devices have become a vital part of life for many of us, and so we at HKVCA are taking steps to present our content so it's accessible on smartphones, as well as tablets, laptops, etc.

We are also keen on making best use of the yearly dues you pay, and don't want to spend any more on postage than is absolutely necessary. So, if we want you to join us online, we'll have to show you that we're serious about providing you with a satisfying experience.

This revamped newsletter edition is the result of a whole new way of thinking about how you want to read it. Here are some of the steps we've taken:

  • rebuilt the newsletter so it displays correctly on all devices from the narrow screen of the smartphone to a widescreen monitor on a desk, and all devices in between,
  • revamping the style so it is clean, well laid-out, allowing you to easily read the items that interest you,
  • displaying large sized photos so that you can view their content easily,
  • providing links within articles that encourage you to seek out more detail
  • creating a navigation structure that allows you to move around the content, or visit our other sites such as our main web site or Facebook,
  • providing a newspaper-style columns option for easier reading on widescreen monitors
  • including added content in the online version for which there was insufficient room in the paper copy.

So, how are we doing? What else would you like to see? What are your likes and dislikes about the online newsletter? Feel free to give us your opinion by using the "Contact Us" link at the bottom of the page.

Note: as time permits, we'll be updating and converting our web sites as well.

Writing Contest Update

Photo of Gail AngelIn our last issue, we were putting plans together for our annual writing contest. I announced our chosen Veterans Stories, asked for help to find a coordinator to manage the contest, and invited people to consider becoming extra judges as reserve. As the song says, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” Our plans didn’t come together as we expected, but progress was made on other counts.

The lack of a writing contest coordinator led us to the regretful decision of suspending the contest for one year. Therefore, I have no winners to announce in this issue, as I’d normally do. However, we recognized an opportunity to review the progress and success we’ve had over the years, learn from the pain points our past coordinators have reported, and prepare for a better experience next school year.

Linda Miller from Ontario Region accepted the job to create a historical list of every entry we’ve received over all years, so we could look at entries by school, by province, by region, by language…all kinds of things. The list we have right now isn’t complete because we know there are records to dig through to add to the list, but it is complete based on the records we can access right now.

We confirmed that almost all of our entries come from BC and Ontario, which isn’t a surprise since until last year, our judges all came from BC and Ontario. However, given how active our Prairie Region has been, and with Winnipeg being the Winnipeg Grenadiers’ home base, it is disappointing that Manitoba hasn’t had more entries. When we announce our next contest this fall, maybe someone in Prairie Region might take the initiative to promote the contest with a personal touch.

We looked at the email letter that is sent out each year to launch the contest. It has been edited in such a way that we can simply, with a few changes to key dates, reuse the same letter each year. This reduces the work of the coordinator, and allowed us to have the letter professionally translated.

We looked at the hundreds of email addresses we reach to announce the contest. Each Region has been asked to verify the accuracy of the names and email addresses, as these do change. This fall we plan to use an email service (free for an organization of our size) to make the tracking and maintenance much easier and much less time consuming. If anyone has experience setting up a service like this, and you have a few hours to spare, please email me:

The instructions that have been used in recent years are being rewritten by a professional technical writer and bright and shiny for a new coordinator to follow.

The following veterans’ stories have been selected for the 2016-17 school year: Private Frank Christensen, WG, Lieut. C. Douglas Johnston, RRC, Rifleman Ralph MacLean, RRC, Corporal George Peterson, WG and Private Larry Stebbe, WG.

All we need now is a volunteer to run the contest! Are you just the person?

BC Region Report

Event: Luncheon, May 16 2016 to present Gerry Gerrard with a Peace medal from an organization of Chinese business men. The organization, represented in 39 countries, exists to show appreciation to veterans who fought for peace in the Asian theatre of WWII.

Place : James Bay Inn, Victoria

Guests : Gerry Gerrard, Jim Trick (HKVCA Web Master),Fiona Hyslop, daughter of Dr. Anderson, who as a prisoner of the Japanese was kept in Hong Kong to operate in the Bowen Hospital , Gerry Tuppert, Ron and Linda Quesnel who was regional rep for ten years, plus ELEVEN members of Gerry's devoted family.

Before lunch we all enjoyed members describing their affiliation to the Association. After lunch Gerry very kindly agreed to tell some of his war story. Not a sound in the room interfered with his talk. Could he have ever imagined 75 years before this date that he would describe his wartime history while his great-grandson listened?

There were amusing details of his enlistment at the age of 16, mention of the sites from Halifax to Victoria where his signalman skills were part of his duties, orders from Ottawa to board a train to Vancouver, members from BC were told their parents could visit in Vancouver, sadly, however the troops were marched straight for the train on to the ship that was taking them to their fate. Only when they were underway on the Pacific were they told they were on the way to defend Hong Kong.  

He closed his remarks by describing sailing into Hong Kong harbour and being given the news that they were surrounded by 65,000 Japanese soldiers !!!This is the sort of oral history that we need from all our vets to preserve this part of Canada's war time support.

	Quesnel (former BC Region Director) pinning the Peace Medal on Gerry 
	Gerrard, Hong Kong Veteran

Linda Quesnel (former BC Region Director) pinning the Peace Medal on Gerry Gerrard, Hong Kong Veteran

When the applause ended I invited Linda to pin the Peace Medal to Gerry's blazer. adding one more to the many on his other shoulder, and the medal of St George on the red ribbon around his neck made him look most splendid.

Happy farewells and agreements that we encourage more members, and a possible gathering after Thanksgiving, at which Fiona has agreed to describe living in Hong Kong before the family was evacuated in 1942.

Blessings to all.

Prairie Region Report

Greetings everyone!

We held our Social event and Chinese Peace Medals presentation in Calgary on May 7, 2016, at the Royal Canadian Legion, Branch #285, from 12:30 pm to 3:30 pm with 43 members and guests in attendance.

We had five members from Edmonton, three members from BC including our BC Regional Director Gwen Day, and members and guests from Calgary, Red Deer, and South of Calgary, High River, Cardston and Lethbridge.

Ralph Maclean receiving the 
		Chinese Peace Medal from Art Hanger

Ralph Maclean receiving the Chinese Peace Medal from Art Hanger

The highlight of the afternoon was the presentations of the Chinese Peace Medal to Ralph Maclean and Doug Rees. The medal for Arthur Schwartz, who passed away before the medal could be presented, was received posthumously by his daughter Pat Schwartz from Canal Flats, B.C. Medals were presented by Art Hanger, a retired Member of Parliament, and friend of HKVCA. We also recognized David Vidalin, a Canadian who was part of the American Landing Party in Hong Kong at the end of the war.

Doug Rees receiving the 
			Chinese Peace Medal from Art Hanger

Doug Rees receiving the Chinese Peace Medal from Art Hanger

A Calgary HKVCA member, Terry Klok, brought a dozen friends from the Chinese Community. Six were members of ALPHA (Association for Preserving the History of WWII in Asia). The secretary of the Calgary ALPHA very kindly gave an impromptu presentation on ALPHA’s goals and purpose, which are similar to HKVCA, with education a high priority to never forget the History of WWII in Asia. They invited us to participate in some of their events in Chinatown, especially around November 11th.

Ralph Maclean brought his memorabilia and his Order of St. George Medal to share with people, which they really enjoyed.

Pat Connery receiving the 
		Chinese Peace Medal on behalf of her late father Arthur Schwartz from 
		Art Hanger

Pat Connery receiving the Chinese Peace Medal on behalf of her late father Arthur Schwartz from Art Hanger

Efforts are being made to facilitate medal presentations to the two western Canadian Veterans who were unable to attend the HKVCA August 2015 Conference in Ottawa.

A social event in Edmonton initially planned for this spring, is to be rescheduled for the fall.

Hopefully this summer, arrangements can be made to meet Saskatchewan HKVCA members.

Have a pleasant summer everyone!

Ontario Region News

On November 6th, Ian Doull, Ann Hyland and Ted Terry again set up their display at Billings Bridge Plaza for Veterans Appreciation Day, a vital event put on by Veterans Affairs Canada with a large number of displays from all the Canadian Forces branches, police, and organizations like ours. Shoppers viewed the displays and also a few school classes with their teachers walked by and collected information.

On December 6th at the “C” Force Memorial Wall there was a memorial service commemorating the 74th anniversary of the beginning of the “Battle of Hong Kong”. There was a good crowd in attendance for the service and for the luncheon following the service at “Tuckers Marketplace Restaurant”. There were many dignitaries in attendance who laid wreaths representing: The Government of Canada, Veterans Affairs Canada, War Amps, Canadian Veterans Advocacy, Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada, Royal Canadian Legion, National Capital Commission as well as representatives from the Royal Hong Regiment Volunteers who again came from Toronto. There were also numerous wreaths laid by family members in memory of their loved ones. Check out Richard Lawrence’s website (you need to scroll down 4 pages to see our ceremony).

On February 23, Ian Doull and Mitzi Ross attended the Resource Fair of the Teachers Institute on Canadian Parliamentary Democracy at the Lord Elgin Hotel. That event brings History teachers from across Canada to Ottawa to gather information to share with their school boards and teachers in their home areas. We set up a HKVCA display and distributed our materials to the teachers.

It has been a quiet spring here in the capital so not much to report. We are planning on having a luncheon in June or July. Date to be decided soon.

While the weather in this part of the province can’t make up its mind if it is winter or spring, we’ve decided to plan ahead to our August gathering. We’re proposing to meet in Trenton, Ontario for lunch followed by a tour of the National Air Force Museum of Canada. We haven’t settled on a restaurant as yet, but the museum is open and free on Sunday afternoon. (Wheelchairs are free). The first email has gone out and another will follow with details for the lunch and directions.

The idea of meeting at the museum was suggested by Major Brian Tang, an HKVCA member, and he has been very helpful at the Base and with comments about places to eat.

So far I have heard from veteran Fred Cooper with a party of five, Ian Doull [Lloyd Doull, RRC], Robert Ryan of Plainfield [ John  Arthurs, RRC], Leon Sokalski [George Sokalski, WG] , Mike Babin [Alfred Babin, RRC], Susan MacDonell [George MacDonell, RRC], Pat and Bernard Turcotte [Leonard Corrigan, WG] and Mark Purcell [Leonard Corrigan, WG].

Speaking with Connie Darling, [Edward Phillips, RRC] said she hopes to attend the event in August. She’s recovering from a car accident last fall. Irene Firlotte, [Lawrence Firlotte, RRC], was also interested in going to Trenton, as was Kathleen Mills-Sevigny [Alfred Mills, RRC]. John Russell, [Albert Russell, RRC], will be in Newfoundland and Steve Chapman, [Frederick Orland Chapman, RRC] may be out west over the summer.

Sandy Harris is the niece of veteran Douglas Rees, RRC, and we had a long and interesting conversation when I told her that her uncle was being awarded a commemorative Peace Medal from the Chinese government. The presentation was held in Calgary on May 7th and also in Granby, Quebec on that date. Sandy said her uncle never mentioned this honour. Ralph McLean, RRC, was also recognized in Calgary that day.

Other members of HKVCA- Yvonne Southworth, [Donald Southworth, RRC] is fine but having mobility issues. Dorothy Soper, [George Soper, RRC ] now lives at Sunnybrook Hospital, Veterans Wing, and Evelyn St. John [Ralph St. John, RRC] is living in Coboconk, ON and is 92 years of age.

Quebec Region Report

It has been some time since our last report.  Hope you all enjoyed a very nice and safe Holiday Season in the good company of family and friends.  We all took a short break in certain activities and since mid-January we were fast at work again.

Lucette, Derrill, Allison Pollock, William (Bill) MacWhirter, Philip Doddridge, Paul Dallain, Emmie Flanagan

L. to R. Lucette, Derrill, Allison Pollock, William (Bill) MacWhirter, Philip Doddridge, Paul Dallain, Emmie Flanagan

Lucette, Edward (Ed) Campbelton and Eric Batley

Lucette, Edward (Ed) Campbelton and Eric Batley

In November and December all our Hong Kong Veterans were presented with the China Peace Medal and Certificate. Derrill Henderson and I and in the company of Emmie Flanagan, Atlantic Region Director, held the presentation on the Gaspe Coast for our Veterans of the area.  Later, Derrill and I repeated the presentation in Richmond, QC for our local Veterans, then to the Montreal area.  It was an honour for us to issue this token of appreciation to our Veterans.

Dempsey Syvret

Dempsey Syvret

In November 2015 we held our executive meeting with the reading of reports etc., and thus far for 2016 we have held our meetings by tele-communication. All in all things are well.  

We recently lost our last Hong Kong veteran Eric Batley living in Bury, QC  A man of few words but he was very present for his comrades, family and friends of the community. We will remember them!

That is it at this time and looking forward to meeting many of you later this year.

Lucette Mailloux-Muir
Quebec Regional Director

Hannah's Tribute

photo of Hannah

Hong Kong veteran Leslie Malcolm Canivet, passed away on May 30th 2016 at the age of 95. His Great-Grandaughter, Hannah Veaudry, delivered the following tribute.

My Grandpa By: Hannah Veaudry

Not – How did he die?

But – How did he live?

Not – What did he gain?

But – What did he give?

These are the things that measure the worth, Of a man as a man, regardless of birth.To say my great grandpa is a hero, would be lying. He is so much more than that. Born in 1921 to immigrant parents, he was always lively and loving to his siblings. Life was harder in those times, and he always kept a smile on his face. His life changed forever in 1941 when Japan declared war on British Hong Kong and the United States of America.

Called to help his country, my great grandpa went overseas to fight in the war. He was a Private in the Royal Canadian Ordinance Corps in the Brigade Group. Around Christmas time, his group was forced to surrender to the Japanese soldiers, except when the soldiers arrived to take them away, they opened fire with machine guns killing many in the house they were taking cover in. The Japanese soldiers then went up the stairs shooting and wounding many. They then tossed grenades in the room hoping it would finish the job. My Grandpa managed to help save some soldiers lives by throwing grenades out of the window before they exploded.

His luck ran out when one of the grenades bounced back in and exploded, leaving pieces of the grenade in his jaw. Some of his army friends managed to get guns from the enemy soldiers and helped to fight back. It was too late.

The Japanese soldiers lit the house on fire where he was upstairs hurt, forcing him and 7 others to jump out of the windows, leaving some of their other friends behind that were too wounded to leave. Sadly, those friends died in the fire. My grandpa and his 7 friends had to make a quick escape and ran down the nearest road to a cliff. Their only chance to survive was to jump into the sea below and swim 2 miles across the bay.

When they reached the other side, there were only 4 of them left. The sergeant looked back at the remaining comrades and yelled for someone to throw him a medic bag because one guy was missing half his face. My grandpa threw it to him, and the Sergeant went to my grandpa and bandaged him up!

My grandpa and the other 3 tried to make their way to the town of Stanley. Two days into their walk to Stanley they ran into enemy soldiers. They were captured and marched back to the bay they swam from 2 days before.

Once at the bay, the patrol lined them up for a firing squad my Grandpa took 6 shots before falling to the ground. A few hours later, when Grandpa woke up he was weak from blood loss but managed to pull himself up and begin walking. If this isn't a testament to his will for life nothing ever would be!

He wandered for days lost in the jungle, when he stopped for a rest he fell asleep against a tree, surrounded by bodies of fallen soldiers. As he slept, locals came in and began to steal from the soldiers whatever they could that was of value. They came up on my Grandpa and when they started to rummage through his clothes he woke up.

Panicked, the locals wanted to kill my Grandpa, but one stepped up and said, “No, this is Mr. Les, he's a good guy”. You see before he went to the battlefield he treated everyone as equals, the locals that were servants, he treated them like friends, which is how he was lucky to have his life spared. He lived through all that, and still ended up in a Prisoner of War camp.

He lived there for close to 5 years before being released. He was declared Missing In Action and presumed dead by the Canadian government, even after he was brought home. Once he was cleared and declared alive after his release, he was considered 110% disabled, but still he worked for many years.

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