Richard Field served in Canada’s 2nd Division during World War Two. He grew up in Toronto during the Depression years, where he was able to finish school and join the prewar militia and sea cadets, two organizations that would teach him many valuable lessons in the upcoming war years. When Richard moved into the regular army, he chose the artillery, where he learned all the facets of life in a 25-pounder crew. His training began in Canada, and after an uneventful troopship passage across the Atlantic, it continued in England. Shortly after D-Day, Richard’s crew was sent to Normandy and quickly into Belgium and the Netherlands, and Germany itself. As an artillery crewman, Richard provided support to the front line infantry troops, and he remembered intense battles in the Reichswald Forest and other sites along the route.
We met Richard at the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing in June 2018, where he was interviewed by a delegation of Crestwood students and Mr. Masters.
Oral History Project June 27th, 2018
Gord Cameron was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1921. Gord lived in the west end with his dad, mom, and sister. Gord went to the University of Toronto school. When the war came, his medical school and internship were accelerated, as the army wanted him in their service. By the time he was ready, the war was winding down, and Gord spent most of his time dealing with convalescent soldiers in Toronto, as well as on the troopships. With the end of the war, Gord fell into the rhythm of civilian life, going into practice and making a life with his family. Gord is a father of four; he has two girls and two boys.
Gord was interviewed for this project by a delegation of CHC2D students in January 2018.
Oral History Project April 4th, 2018
John Hall was born in the Canadian West in the early 1920s. He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, though he said he was lucky to have been sheltered from the toughest times. With his brother he made his way to western Ontario, riding the rails and working the ports of Lake Superior. While his brother stayed and worked the mines, John finished school and joined the armed forces in Toronto, eventually landing in the First Hussars. After training he boarded the Queen Elizabeth troopship and headed to Britain, where he spent time in Aldershot, completing his tank crew training. John became a radio operator and main gun loader and a member of a Sherman tank crew. John went ashore in France a few weeks after D-Day and the liberation of Caen, and he saw his early action in Falaise and the ensuing Battle of Normandy. From there he moved through Belgium and the Netherlands, where he has fond memories of the civilians greeting the troops. When the war concluded, John returned to Canada and built a life for himself.
We met John at the Sunnybrook Veterans Wing in July 2017, when he was interviewed by Crestwood students Arielle Meyer and Samara Black.
Oral History Project August 9th, 2017
Oral History Project April 20th, 2015
Frank Boyd was born in Toronto in 1922. He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, though he said he was lucky to have been sheltered from the toughest times. After graduating high school, 19-year-old Frank Boyd joined the armed forces in Toronto, choosing the air force. After training he boarded the troopship Louis Pasteur and headed to Britain, where he spent time in Bournemouth and Binnington, completing his flight training. Frank became an air gunner and a member of a Lancaster crew. One mission saw them shot down, and Frank spent time as a POW, where he said he was treated reasonably well. When the war concluded, he returned to Canada and built a life for himself.
We met Frank at the Sunnybrook Veterans Wing in February 2014, when he was interviewed by Crestwood students Anthony Audette, Spencer Cohen and Braden Harris.
Oral History Project April 17th, 2014