Saturday | December 14, 2019

Aldous, Amanda

Major Amanda Aldous is a member of the current Canadian Forces, one who specializes in logistics.  She has been deployed overseas on a number of occasions, including in Afghanistan and Kuwait, where she worked to provide support to coalition forces in their battles in the ongoing war on terror. In May of 2018, Major Aldous

Aldred, Jack

˜Jack Aldred was born and raised by his father, a war veteran, and his mother, in downtown Toronto. ˜Mr. Aldred always looked up to his older brother, so when his brother went off to fight in the navy, so did Mr. Aldred. ˜Mr. Aldred says that it was “just the thing to do” at the

Allen, Fred

Fred Allen served in the Canadian Forces for many years; he enlisted and served overseas in WW2, and he kept this career going well into the postwar period.  During that time he was also deployed to Vietnam, where he served as part of the truce commission. Fred is a fantastic storyteller, and his recollections here

Allen, Gord

Gord Allen served in the Canadian Army during the Second World War. He grew up in prewar Toronto, where he remembers the tough times of the Great Depression; Gord recalls his father being out of work, and he remembers that he and his friends used to bring food to the homeless men down in the

Allen, Ken

Ken Allen is a Toronto resident in his 101st year, interviewed in April 2017 by Masters at the McCowan Retirement Residence.  Ken had many stories to share about his long life in and around Toronto.  Ken was born in the then village of Todmorden, in today’s Broadview-Danforth neighbourhood.  He remembers a very different Toronto, one

Aral, Selena

Selena Aral joined the reserves to help pay for post-secondary studies after she graduated high school in 1997.  She started off in the navy as a boatswain and remained one for 7 years.  She then decided to change tracks and try out logistics; she was accepted in 2004, which allowed her to go back to

Armstrong, Beatrice

Beatrice “Babs” Armstrong hails from Tring, not too far from London, England. She was the oldest of five children, born in 1923. She remembered life in Tring as being fairly commonplace, and she and her friends spent most of their time on their bicycles, or going to the cinema when they had extra change, something

Astor, David

David Astor served in the USMC during WW2. He enlisted in he early stages of the war, leaving his home in Portland, Maine for Marine training that took him all over the United States before his deployment to the Pacific theatre. David was stationed on both Guam and Guadalcanal, before finding himself transferred to the

Back, Wib

Wib Back was born May 11, 1926 in Toronto. Wib’s early life had its difficulties:  his mother died when Wib was just 11, and his father was unable to care for Wib and his siblings, so they ended up going into foster care through the Children’s Aid Society.  Wib was consequently moved around, going to

Bacon, Al

Al Bacon was born Dec 27, 1919 in Toronto.  He grew up in the city’s east end, attending Danforth Tech before the Great Depression forced him to quit school and go to work.  Al found a job at the Simpson’s Department Store, where he was an elevator operator.  When the war came, he and a

Baker, Norman

Norman Baker was born in 1916 in the west end of Toronto, where he attended Runnymede Collegiate.  Norm’s parents hailed from Riegate, England and had emigrated to Canada before the Great War, and Norm and his two brothers were raised in the British tradition.  And they were fortunate not to be impacted by the realities

Barber, Andy

Andy Barber is from Montreal, where he grew up during World War Two.  Not one for school, he left to find employment in the CN rail yards of Point St-Charles, where he found work as a carman’s apprentice.  But the lure of the navy proved strong, and Andy joined up just as the Korean War

Barker, Carl

Carl Barker is a lifelong Mainer.  Born in 1929, he grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, which he recounts through some fascinating specific memories, including that he slept in a drawer.  As his father was a grocer, the family did not go hungry, but Carl remembers that he did not see a

Barker, Robert

Major Barker joined the Canadian Forces in 2000, and graduated from the Royal Military College in 2005. In 2008, he was deployed to Afghanistan, where he worked to help rebuild the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police force. During his time in Afghanistan, he received an official mention in dispatches for his exemplary work.

Beal, Ronald

Ron Beal enlisted because he was part of the regiment already as a bugler and it was expected of him. After training and the overseas journey and several months of waiting, , he was sent to Dieppe. Ron’s division was given the task of clearing the field battery that had a firing position on the

Bedal, Carl

Carl was born in 1925 in Brighton, Ontario.  He grew up on a farm during the Depression, and some of his earliest memories include seeing classmates in tattered clothing.  His family relocated to Belleville when it was time for Carl to attend high school, and it was after graduation that he made the decision to

Bell, Walter

Walter Bell is the father of Mrs. Sue Brownlee, a Crestwood Staff member. As a member of Britain’s Royal Artillery in World War Two, Mr. Bell began training in England, before heading to Freetown, Sierra Leone to train African troops. He eventually took his trained troops and headed to Burma, where he fought for Britain

Bentley, Lloyd

Lloyd Bentley grew up in northern Ontario, in Kirkland Lake and Sault Ste Marie, during the Great Depression years; the family was on the move as Lloyd’s father searched for work.  When the war came, Lloyd joined the air force, and he began his training for the RCAF, following the BCATP training scheme from Brandon

Bloom, Evelyn

Evelyn Bloom grew up in prewar Montreal, enjoying life near “her beautiful mountain”, while at the same time seeing the harsh realities of the Great depression.  When the war came, she and her sister decided to enlist.  They understood that Canada was under assault, and stories of U-Boats in the Gulf of St. Lawrence only

Blowe, Don

Don Blowe served in the Canadian forces during WWII. He enlisted in the Essex Scottish regiment at the age of 18; after training he was sent to England and he then saw action in France, Holland, and Germany. In Holland he was wounded in his leg; after he recovered he participated in Operation Veritable, where

Bluestein, Ev

Ev Bluestein served in the American Army during WW2, specifically General Patton’s armoured corps. When they made their breakout from the Battle of Normandy, Ev and his comrades fought through France and into the Netherlands and Germany, helping to bring the European war to its conclusion. Ev came to us courtesy of Len Levy, a

Boggild, Carl

Carl Boggild originally came from Denmark, but his parents moved to Canada when he was only one year old, so his real formative experiences took place in Nova Scotia, where his parents settled.  Carl grew up in the southern part of the province, where he and his family lived a relatively good life in spite

Bond, Levon

Major Levon Bond is a member of the current Canadian Forces, one who specializes in air force intelligence operations.  He has been deployed overseas on a number of occasions, including in Haiti, where Canada provided disaster relief after the devastating earthquake.  More recently, he was sent to Afghanistan and Qatar, where he worked to provide

Bow, John

John Bow served in the Royal Canadian Service Corps during the Second World War.   Born in Windsor in 1926, he turned 18 in 1944, as the war was getting into its final year, and it turned out that he was unable to go overseas.  John had two older siblings, an older brother who joined

Boyd, Frank

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

Boyd, John

John Boyd was born in Alberta in 1915.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, though he said he was lucky to have been sheltered from the toughest times.  The harsh conditions did push his politics to the left, and John was attracted to the leftist ideals of the time.  After graduating

Boyer, Michael

Michael Boyer is a veteran born in Toronto, into a big family.  Fairly well-to-do, Mr. Boyer and his family were less affected by the depression than many. He joined the army at a young age and became part of the Fourth Field Royal Canadian Artillery. Travelling to Europe, Mr. Boyer fought along allied forces such

Bradley, Tom

Tom Bradley is an American veteran of the Second World War, having served with the 29th Infantry Division in Europe.  Tom hails from New Jersey, where he grew up during the Great Depression.  When the war came, he was in school in Massachusetts, expecting to go on to college.  But the government had other ideas,

Braithwaite, Leonard

Leonard Braithwaite was born in interwar Toronto, growing up in the downtown neighbourhood of Kensington Market. As the Great Depression took hold, the young Leonard went to school and helped his family out by selling newspapers. When World War Two came along, Leonard decided to enlist, only to be put off by a series of

Braybrook, Chelsea

Chelsea Braybrook was born in the city of Sarnia, Ontario, where she spent the majority of her childhood with her both her parents as well as her younger little brother.  She never intended on being a soldier at young age but instead had aspirations of becoming a star like her childhood singing idol Cher.  As

Brooker, Odie

Odie Brooker was born in 1929 in Toronto’s Cabbagetown neighbourhood. In the midst of the Depression, Odie was placed in the care of the Children’s Aid Society. He spent the next nine years in foster homes in the Caledon region. At age 15, he snuck into the Canadian Army and spent the next year training

Brooks, Douglas

Douglas Brooks was born in 1921 in Toronto, the middle child out of all his four brothers.  Douglas is currently 92 years of age.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  Like many men, the reason Douglas joined the army was simply because there was no work; also all his friends and

Bunston, Larry

Larry Bunston was born in Saskatoon, but early in his life his father made the decision to take the family to Ontario, hopefully to make a better life for his family.  Larry grew up in different parts of Ontario, notably Oshawa and Brantford, where he and his four brothers played sports and kept on their

Burningham, Grant

Grant Burningham served in Canada’s mission to Afghanistan in 2013, helping to train the Afghan national police force and working alongside fellow police officers from an array of nations.  Deployed for thirteen months, he was able to experience the many facets of this country in crisis, reminding us that military and overseas service remains a

Butts, Charles

Charles Butts was born in Woburn, Massachusetts in 1926.  He spent his early years on the outskirts of Boston, growing up against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  After graduating from high school, Charles attended Middlebury College, as he was given an educational deferment from the draft.  He did end up in the U.S. Navy, but

Cameron, Gord

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

Cameron, Ray

Ray Cameron is a veteran of the Merchant Navy.  When the war came he was living in Lindsay, Ontario, where he had been on the farm and had worked on the Great Lakes as a seaman.  When Norway was pulled into the war, the Norwegian merchant marine made the decision to recruit in Canada, and

Campbell, William

William Campbell is from Lossiemouth, Scotland. He served in the Royal Navy during the Second World War, mainly aboard the battleship King George V. In this interview he painted a detailed portrait of what life was like on the ship, from the weather to the food to the uniform. William was able to travel all

Carrigan, George

George Carrigan is Mr. Masters’ grandfather. He was a veteran of the Great War, who went off to fight in that conflict with five of his brothers. George was born in rural Nova Scotia, and he often spoke of the war as an opportunity to escape the limited opportunities that awaited him. He was among

Carter, George

George Carter was born in Toronto, Canada, and was the first of 14 children of John Carter and Louise Braithwaite Carter, who were from Barbados. Carter excelled in sports as a cricket player, and he was a strong student as well. He was also very social and from an early age he understood the importance

Casey, Gord

Gord Casey served in the Royal Canadian Navy during World War Two, where he was one of many sailors playing a role in the Battle of the Atlantic.  Gord saw action on a variety of ships, where he protected convoys as cargo ships brought vital supplies to the European theatre of war.  Along the way

Cash, Norm

Norman Cash was born January 1, 1920 in Russia, in the city of Odessa.  When he was one year old his family made the decision to emigrate as the anti-Semitic violence associated with the pogroms was intensifying in the wake of the Great War, where Norm’s father had been a veteran.  The family settled in

Castel, Jean-Gabriel

Jean-Gabriel Castel is a man who has lived an exciting and varied life, filled with unique stories and experiences. Born in Nice, France in 1925, he spent part of his youth as part of the French Resistance in World War 2, challenging Germany’s wartime occupation of his homeland. He and his family survived all the

Castellan, Peter

Peter Castellan was born in Toronto in 1918, making him one of the centenarians that we have interviewed for the Crestwood Oral History Project.  Peter grew up in the east end of Toronto, in the Gerrard/Broadview neighbourhood, where he remembers days spent at the YMCA and the local firehall, as well as the many local

Chartre, Bob

Bob Chartre grew up in prewar Quebec, one son in a very large family. He remembers well the difficulties of the Great Depression, and even recalls that his father was happy when he and two of his brothers were called up for the war as that meant fewer mouths to feed! When Bob went into

Chu, Henry

Henry Chu was a captain in the South Korean army during the Korean War of 1950-53. When his family was separated with the designation of the 38th Parallel, he found himself in the south. With the coming of the war, he became involved in a commando unit whose job it was to inflitrate enemy forces

Cohen, Kelman

Kelman Cohen, born in 1925, was the son of Morris Cohen and Esther Minden of Toronto. Morris Cohen was a Russian immigrant.  Kelman grew up in the Great Depression and in his own words, ‘we all suffered’.  Kelman had a colourful childhood in downtown Toronto, and he shared many of his recollections from the neighbourhood

Cohen, Norman

Norman Cohen was born in the east end of Toronto in 1923.  Growing up Jewish in the Beach neighbourhood, Norman dealt with the anti-Semitism of the era, as well as the economic pressures that led him to quit school at age 16.  Norman found work around the neighbourhood, and he fondly remembered working for Charlie’s

Collens-Smith, Audrey

Audrey Collens-Smith played her own role during the Second World War…the accordion. Her job was to keep Canadians’ morale high – and to keep them entertained. Teenagers at the time, she and her sister Mary toured military bases on the home front, and played all kinds of events to keep Canadians smiling and dancing. Audrey

Collins, Bernie

Bernie Collins was an RCAF navigator during World War 2. He started out his life in Toronto, Ontario, the only son in a large extended family. He helped his grandfather in his auto-shop, working with tin and learning to use his hands. When he got the chance, Bernie joined the RCAF, knowing that he was

Comber, Vera

Vera Comber grew up in London; when she was 12 she was evacuated with her school from London to the countryside. When she returned, she endured the Blitz and remembers spending nights in the Underground. While living in London, her sister enrolled in the land army, and soonafter Vera did as well. She was sent

Comisso, Amber

LCdr Amber Comisso is a member of Canada’s present day forces, serving her nation in the navy.  She visited Crestwood in April 2019, at which time she shared her experiences with Mr. Birrell’s Geography 9 class. She is originally from the GTA, and the military was not in her sights until the time for university

Cossman, Howard

Howard Cossman was born on November 3rd, 1925 in Montreal, Canada and is here today in Toronto, retelling his courageous life stories. Growing up as a Jewish Canadian in the 30’s wasn’t always easy. Howard thought that one day he would have to show his appreciation of his religion and demonstrate his patriotism to his

Cournelisson, Rene

Rene Cournelisson’s World War Two story is one we have not previously heard at Crestwood. Rene was born into a family of thirteen, and he grew up in prewar Holland, a nation that found itself occupied by Germany in 1940. Rene like so many Dutch chafed under the restrictions of occupation, and like many brave

Cournoyea, Joe

Joe Cournoyea was born in the Tweed, Ontario in the early 1920s.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, in a large family in a rural area of eastern Ontario.  While four of his older brothers served in the Second World War, Joe and the younger children worked the family farm, though

Crawford, Stuart

Stuart Crawford was born on March 2, 1922, in Kingston, Ontario.  He had three brothers, and the boys all grew up playing sports and musical instruments, and they shared the same Kingston Whig Standard paper route, passed from one brother to the next.  Stuart’s family was very close, and with his parents’ sacrifices they made

Cuccaro, Joe

Joe Cuccaro hails from Plainfield, New Jersey.  Born in 1937, he spent his early years growing up against the backdrop of World War Two, though for Joe his earliest memories of boyhood center on the New York Yankees.  In the 1950s Joe went on to higher education, and the ROTC became part of his life,

Curtis, Jim

Mr. Curtis was in the military from 1939-1945. He was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Mr. Curtis was in Communications, he was in charge of operating a radio as well as knowing Morse Code.He spent 3 years in basic training before going off to fight in Europe. His campaigns were in Italy, and

Dantsig, Benjamin

Benjamin Dantsig was a pilot in the Soviet Air Force during WW2. He fought in a number of battles during the war, including the final Soviet attack on Berlin. He also protected the convoy routes through the Arctic. He was shot down several times and was lucky to survive a partial amputation of his leg.

Davies, Daryll

Daryll Davies is in the present day RCMP. He has served in many UN peacekeeping missions, reminding that not only soldiers take part in these missions. Daryll has visited many troubled regions in this capacity, among them Bosnia, East Timor, Jordan, and Afghanistan. His roles included police training and dealing with cold cases and war

Davies, Fred

žFred Davies was born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, into a family of six brothers and one sister. He graduated high school and volunteered for the RCAF. He chose the air force because he wanted to be a pilotž. After enlisting in the RCAF, Davies was sent to Manning Depot in Montreal for training.ž Davies was

Dawe, Andrea

Major Dawe joined the Canadian Forces a little later than the average recruit, making the big decision when she turned 30.  After initial training, she focused on the logistical and personnel side of the military.  In this regard she was deployed to Afghanistan, where she was stationed at Kandahar Airfield.  While there she was responsible

Dayton, Charles

Charles Dayton was born in the Prairies, but his family moved to Vancouver when he was a baby, and that is where he would grow up. When he finished high school in 1941, he joined the airforce, and he eventually became a navigator. With the war underway, Charles was stationed in many areas in Canada

Denham, Ronald

Ronald Denham served with the Canadian Forces during the Cold War years. In addition to his in Canada deployments, which included a stay in the Arctic, Ronald was stationed on the frontlines of the European Cold War, where he was part of the British Army on the Rhine. He was able to offer thePolitics 12

Dennis, Scott

At a young age Major Dennis was interested in aviation. He joined the Royal Canadian Air Cadets and obtained his glider pilot license and private pilot license while in high school in Halifax, Nova Scotia.  After attending university at Mount Saint Vincent University, he obtained his commercial pilot license and flew as a flight instructor

DeVries, Jan

Jan De Vries was 18 years old when he decided to enter the war. He joined the army and passed basic training, choosing to enlist in the paratrooper – or Para – battalion. He went overseas in 1943; in England the Paras continued their training. On June 5, 1944 the men got up and prepared

Dias, Ricardo

Major Dias joined the Canadian Forces as a reserve Radio Teletype Operator with 745 (Edmonton) Communication Squadron in 1993. While he was attending the University of Alberta, he was accepted into the Reserve Entry Scheme for Officers and was commissioned in 1996. While at 745 Comm Sqn he served in a variety of positions: Troop

Dinney, Stan

Stan Dinney was born in New Brunswick in 1922, near Moncton.  His father moved the family to Windsor, Ontario for a few years when Stan was young, but he took the family back to Moncton with the coming of the Great Depression, when he secured employment at a family lumber mill.  Stan enjoyed his early

Dobbs, Bill

Bill was born in Winnipeg in 1923. Bill joined the air force in the early 1940’s where he would later become a bomb aimer . After his term as a bomb aimer, he went to university to pursue an education in electrical engineering. Bill married Betty Cooperstock. They had 5 children and have 11 eleven

Douckworth, Doug

Doug Duckworth was born in England in 1923. He moved from England to Canada in 1930. Like most young people, he dropped out of school to join the war effort. He learned to march like a soldier and be part of a group; pilots were never taught how to use parachute in case of emergency!

Dwyer, Liam

We met Liam Dwyer at the Castle Peak Retirement Suites in Bracebridge, where he presently lives.  Liam is one of several authors/editors who assembled At Your Age, a collection of stories of those who live there.  The residents felt it was important for them to record their stories, which serve as a great entry point into

Earle, Roy

Roy Earle was born in 1924 in Montclair, New Jersey, and he grew nearby in the city of Bloomfield, where he graduated from high school in 1942. Knowing he would soon be drafted, he made the decision to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps in late 1942, eleven months after the U.S. joined the conflict.

Eddy, Jim

Mr. Jim Eddy served in the RCAF during WWII, when he was connected to Bomber Command. While on a mission over Germany, his Lancaster was shot down, and Jim went on to be a POW in German prison camps for the remainder of the war. We first visited Mr. Jim Eddy in his room at

Elliott, Elizabeth

Elizabeth Elliott grew up in Toronto during the 1930s and 1940s; even with the Great Depression, she remembers her father as a driven man, one who always took his family to the countryside, even during the tough times.  As a result, Elizabeth recalls that she and her siblings were in good health in spite of

Eyres, Ardwell

Ardwell Eyres served in the Canadian Army during the Second World War.  Born in Cameron, Ontario, Ardwell grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  His father was a farmer, so Ardwell remembered that they always had food to eat, but he was aware of the economic circumstance that befell others.  Ardwell did go

Fan, Meng

Meng Fan was born in 1926 in Sumatra, Dutch East Indies, which now is Indonesia. Later he moved to Hong Kong.  When war came, Hong Kong had to support in war efforts. However, Hong Kong was lacking resources such as food. Meng Fan volunteered to join the army. He started with training and was barely

Farquarson, Bob

Bob Farquarson hails from the Canadian Prairies; he was born on March 1, 1923, on a reservation in Alberta, where his father was the government stockman.  Bob’s early years were spent on the Prairies, right in the middle of the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl.  He recalls the conditions drove his father to bankruptcy

Fassbender, Edmund

Edmund Fassbender was born in Germany in 1925. He moved to Cologne, where he spent the rest of his years leading up to the war. Edmund joined the Hitler Youth at a young age. Like most young men, he was conscripted at age 18. He was a private, who trained as a sharpshooter. He was

Ferris, John

John Ferris grew up in Ontario in the prewar era, alternating between the country and the growing city of Toronto.  He experienced the two worlds of Canada, and had positive memories of both.  With the war, John enlisted, recalling it to be a duty and an expectation.  John chose the air force, and he began

Field, Richard

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

Finnigan, Jim

We met Jim Finnigan at the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing in the fall of 2012, where he was interviewed by Grade 12 students Katherine Charness, Julie Cho, and Emma Myers.  Jim served in the Royal Air Force in the Second Wolrld War, where he was connected to transport details that were deployed largely in the Middle

Fish, Lawrence

Lawrence Fish was born in Crowle, England in 1923. He was the eldest of four siblings. In school he went to seventh grade and then started to work in farming and driving trucks. Most of his childhood was spent working as well as helping with his siblings. In 1941, once he was old enough to enlist,

Fontaine, Les

We met Les Fontaine at the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing in the fall of 2012, when he was interviewed by grade 11 students Sarah Mainproze, Steph Erdman, and Kristen Stribopoulos.  Les served in the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War, and he shared with the girls his memories of the Great Depression, as well

Foote, Jack

Jack Foote served in the RCN during WW2. For many years he and Fred Walden spoke to Mr. Masters’ history classes about their support role in the D-Day invasion and aftermath. After Mr. Walden passed away in 2008, Mr. Foote decided to retire from speaking at schools but in 2010 he did agree to sit

Ford, Jack

Jack Ford was born in 1921 and is currently 92 years old.  He was born in Oklahoma City, in the United States but grew up in Canada.  When the war broke out in 1939, he decided to enlist in the Canadian forces, even though it was not yet an American war.  Jack joined the RCAF,

Forster, Alan

Alan Forster was born in Toronto, growing up in the city’s east end during the Great Depression.  From a military family, he joined up as soon as he was able, heading off to training and then to England.  Shortly after the D-Day invasion, Alan headed to France, to begin his “baptism under fire”.  They were

Forsyth, Ed

Ed Forsyth is a Canadian veteran of WW2, having fought his way through France, the Netherlands, and Germany. We met Ed through the Royal Canadian Legion, where he is a proud member of the Brigadier O.M.Martin Branch at Peard Road. Ed is one of many members at that branch who have taken part in this

Fowler, Jim

Jim Fowler served in the Canadian Forces during the Cold War era, and as such he participated in a number of peacekeeping missions from the period. Jim was deployed in Germany, and was posted to a number of bases in Canada; most notably he served in the Suez in the early 70s, during the period of

Foyle, Gerry

Gerry Foyle served in the Canadian Forces from the 1950s to the 1990s, building a career during the period that corresponded to Canada’s “Golden Age” of foreign policy and peacekeeping.  Gerry joined up in the 50s, still a teenager, when Canada was involved in the Suez Crisis, and he went on to supply the Canadian

Gallant, Alyre

Alyre Gallant was born December 23, 1923, in Piusville, Prince Edward Island.  He grew up during the time of the Depression, and when his father died when he was quite young, Alyre left school and began working on the family farm.  And that was the theme for the rest of the decade and into the

Gardner, Earl

Earl Gardner is a proud member of the Canadian Forces in the postwar era.  He joined its ranks in the days of the Cold War, and he recalls the tensions of the Cuban Missile Crisis in particular, as well as the rebuilding that followed Hurricane Hazel in Toronto.  Earl’s career covered many aspects of the

Garnet, Sam

Mr. Sam Garnet served in the RCAF during WWII. After training that took him across Canada and to the Bahamas, he was eventually seconded to the RAF, where he joined Coastal Command. Mr. Garnet was a wireless air gunner who served on B-24 Liberators; he spent most of his war doing transatlantic flyovers for the

Gerquest, Peter

Peter Gerquest is from Saddle River, New Jersey, where he was born in 1932 and spent his early years.  When it came time to leave that rural community, Peter attended Hamilton College, and it was about that time when his impending military commitments began to affect his plans, with war in Korea underway.  Peter was candid

Gerrard, Gerry

Gerry Gerrard was in the reserve artillery as of 1938. The day before the war broke out, he was called up and reported to the colonel, who told Gerry he needed a dozen men to go to Victoria.  Since Gerry waswas 17, he didn’t have to go, but he went anyway.  In Victoria, he joined

Gibeau, Philippe

Major Philippe Gibeau is a member of the current Canadian Forces, one who specializes as an aerospace engineer.  He has been deployed overseas on a number of occasions, including in Afghanistan and Kuwait, where he worked to provide support to coalition forces in their battles in the ongoing war on terror. In May of 2018,

Glassman, Israel

Israel Glassman was born in Montreal, Quebec on April 22nd, 1924, six months after his mother landed in Canada.  He was not born in a very good period:  the Great Depression hit Canada in 1929 and 1930.  During that time, Mr. Glassman played street hockey and baseball with his friends for fun. He also did many

Glazier, Jack

Jack Glazier was born on St. Patrick’s Day in 1920 in Winnipeg Manitoba. His family later then moved to Regina. After studying engineering, Jack got a job designing diesel engines for a company in Athabasca, Alberta. At the age of 21, he had joined the RCAF . His Years after his pilot training had concluded

Gogo, Norman

Norm Gogo grew up in Toronto and Michigan, as the family moved when his father was transferred and began work in the Motor City. But the good economic times did not last, and as the Depression worsened the family returned to Canada along Hwy. 5. Back in Toronto Norm went to school in the city’s

Goldie, Tom

Major T.J. (Tom) Goldie was born in Halifax, NS. After completion of high school he joined the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and enjoyed several years serving as an Airframe Technician maintaining aircraft before being selected in 1999 for a military sponsored university training plan through which he completed his studies toward a Bachelor of

Gondek, Zbigniew

Zbigniew Gondek served in the Polish Army during World War Two.  Born in Szemysyl in 1923, he and his family found themselves in the Soviet Zone of occupation after the 1939 Nazi Soviet Pact.  Zbigniew’s father, a police officer, was murdered, and Zbigniew and his mother were transported to Siberia, where they ended up in a

Goobie, Myer

Myer Goobie is from East York in Toronto. He visited us in October 2012, when he was interviewed by students Antony Cook and George Giannopoulos. Myer served in the Canadian Forces during the Second World War, specifically the Devil’s Brigade, a commando unit made up of American and Canadian soldiers. Myer saw action in Sicily,

Goodbody, Harry

Harry enlisted in the Canadian Armed Forces when he was eighteen years old. Harry was sent to fight in Italy after his training in England. He was there when the Allied troops bombed and destroyed the abbey at Monte Cassino. This was one of the darker memories he has of the War. Some of Harry’s

Gorman, Digger

“Digger” Gorman served in the Canadian Navy during the Second World War.  Originally from New Brunswick, the future geology student – that’s where the name “Digger” came from – Digger was deep in his studies when the war approached.  As a science/engineering student, Digger’s enlistment was originally deferred, but like many in his generation, he

Gower, Harry

Harry Gower was born in Toronto in 1922.  He grew up in the city’s west end, where he attended Western Tech.  With the death of his father and the coming of the Great Depression, Harry had to leave high school after one year, and he took a job at Eaton’s, where he operated the elevator

Gregerson, Pete

Pete Gregerson served in Canada’s armed forces in both World War Two and Korea.  Born and raised in the west end of Toronto, Pete grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, attending public school and then Central Tech, where he studied to be a draftsman.  Pete enlisted in the army as WW2 came

Grizzle, Stanley

Stanley Grizzle has led an illustrious life, and Crestwood students were fortunate to meet him in the spring of 2013 – on several occasions – and we are indebted to Kathy Grant and the Legacy Voices Project for setting up that introduction. Stanley Grizzle was born in Toronto in 1918, to Jamaican parents who immigrated

Grosberg, Bill

Bill Grosberg was born on September 21st 1924; he was only 5 years old when the Depression hit. During the Depression Bill had to work so he could afford to go to school; he worked at a boys camp, an experience that helped him a great deal in later life.  Bill was still in school

Grossmann, Gerry

Gerry Grossmann was born May 8, 1925 in Dusseldorf, Germany, into a prosperous Jewish family.  Gerry remembers his childhood in fond terms, as his parents created a home where he and his brother had so many opportunities.  1933 saw a dramatic change though; with the election of Hitler, things changed for the Grossmanns and for

Gulko, Norman

Norman Gulko served in the Canadian army in World War Two, where he saw action on several fronts. After training and the overseas journey, he was deployed to Italy. When that campaign was nearing its conclusion, he was sent to the Netherlands, where he fought through northern Europe and into Germany itself. Norman brought many

Haliburton, Margaret

Margaret Haliburton joined the RCN in WW2, where she served as a WREN. She has spoken at Crestwood for several years, and she has brought a number of other women with her, including her sister Barbara Yule and her friend Francis Todd. All three women give students an insight into life on the home front

Hall, John

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

Hallett, Julie

Julie Hallett was born and raised in London, England. Before the war broke out, life was very good for Julie. She was an honor student at her private school and was given a scholarship to continue her studies there before the war. When the war broke out, she was evacuated with her school to a

Halpenny, Francess

Francess Halpenny hails from eastern Ontario, where she grew up in the 20s and 30s.  The family relocated to the Toronto area early on, and it was there that the young Francess fell in love with books, as she made her way through the Great Depression and built upon her education, which would take her

Hammond, Cy

Cy Hammond was born in Toronto in 1921. He lived in East York, in a working class family, with his mother and father. Cy used to play near the Don River with his friends and cricket at church. In 1941, Cy joined the Royal Canadian Air Force. After six months, Cy was sent to Halifax

Harmon, Phil

Phil Harmon is an American veteran of the Second World War from Maine, where he presently lives in the town of Hollis.  Originally from the Cape Elizabeth area, Phil grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, though his family was fortunate to be spared many of its most negative impacts.  By 1939, as

Harris, Garfield

Garfield Harris was born in Newfoundland in 1923, at a time when Newfoundland was still a British colony.  But just as the Great War did so much damage to a generation of young Newfoundlanders, it also hurt Garfield’s father, who’d run a prosperous fishing fleet before the war.  He made the decision to head west

Harvey, Frederic

Major Harvey has over 20 years of experience in the Canadian Armed Forces, having joined the reserves in 1992. While serving in the reserves and completing his university education, Major Harvey was deployed as a part of Canada’s peacekeeping missions in Haiti (1996) and Bosnia-Herzegovina (1999). In 2000, Maj. Harvey transferred to regular forces as

Hawker, Kitty

We met Kitty Hawker at the Sunnybrook Veterans Wing in April 2017.  Kitty was born in 1920 in Windsor, Ontario, and she and her family spent Kitty’s early years in southwestern Ontario and the Detroit area.  The family saw tough economic times during the Depression years, but they made it through, and by the time

Hayes, Clayton

Clayton Hayes was born in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, and he grew up in the Prairies, first in Saskatchewan and later in Brandon, Manitoba.  The Depression was a difficult time for the family; his father’s business went bankrupt, and the family moved to improve their prospects.  When the war came, Clayton’s older brother joined the navy,

Henderson, Vic

Vic Henderson was a tank man in the war. he went ashore in France on D-Day + 7 and fought through Normandy, the Netherlands, and into Germany. We met him in the Brookbanks neighbourhood, and he was kind enough to share his memories with Crestwood student John Shahidi.

Hertelendy, Joseph

Joseph Hertelendy served in the Hungarian army in World War Two. When Hungary found itself in an alliance with Nazi Germany, he was forced into action on the eastern front, where he saw action at Stanislaw and Stalingrad. He returned home after being wounded on the battlefield. After the war, Joseph was sent to a

Hirschmann, Werner

Werner Hirschmann was a U-boat officer in the German Navy during the Second World War. He served on several U-boats and saw action in both the Mediterranean and Atlantic theatres. When the war came to an end, he and his crew surrendered to Canadian forces, and he became a POW in Canada, later to be

Hishon, John

John Hishon and his mother lived in the Yonge & Bloor area of Toronto, where his Mom worked extremely hard to make a living during the Great Depression..  When the war broke out, John trained on the Canadian Exhibition grounds, where at first they did not have any equipment and were laughed at.  He eventually

Hoare, Edward

Edward “Ted” Hoare grew up against the backdrop of mid 1930s London. Ted received a scholarship to attend a uniform school, but he wasn’t able to attend due to a lack of financial resources. He eventually got a job and registered for the military at the age of fourteen, and he subsequently joined the Home

Hobbs, Murray

Murray Neil Hobbs was born in 1921 in Pickering, Ontario. He was born on a milk farm with his mother, father, and brother. At the age of seven his family moved to Toronto because of the Great Depression. Murray left school early and worked a series of jobs, including being a delivery boy.  He joined

Hodgins, Richard

Richard Hodgins was born in Toronto in 1919.  He grew up in the city’s east end, in the Danforth and Jones neighbourhood.  He has been a hockey fan his whole life, and many of his prewar memories centred on the Toronto St. Pats and the Mutual Street Arena, and then the Leafs at the Gardens,

Hoffe, Lance

Major Lance Hoffe is a member of the current Canadian Forces, one who specializes in combat engineering.  As such he performs a diverse array of duties, from base set up to IED disposal.  He has been deployed overseas on a number of occasions, including three tours in Afghanistan, where he worked to provide crucial tactical

Hunter, Gordon

Gordon Hunter is from north Toronto, a graduate of Lawrence Park, where he finished his diploma at the midpoint of the war.  It was at that time that he was made aware of his military options, and Gordon opted for the RCAF.  He went into an extended period of training, where he settled on being

Hutton, Edward

Crestwood students Max Saunders and Alex Ross visited Edward Hutton in his room at the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing in November 2010. There he told them about his wartime experinces and memories, and of his love for the game of football.

Hynds, Jim

Jim Hynds was born in Toronto in 1922.  He grew up in the city’s west end, in the Bloor-Bathurst neighbourhood that he calls “Hogtown”.  Jim attended Harbord Collegiate and he recalls that life during the Great Depression – at least for his family – was not that rough as his father was able to keep

Ikeda, Koiichi

Ikeda Koiichi was connected to the Japanese military during the Second World War, serving in a procurement capacity for the overseas army. He was born in the Maijuru region, where he remembers growing up poor. When the opportunity came, he began his time overseas, originally serving in Manchuria, and that is where he spent most

Iler, Harley

Harley Iler grew up in Essex County, in southwest Ontario.  Harley spent his formative years on a farm, where he remembers his parents struggling through the difficult years of the Great Depression.  Harley attended school in a one-room schoolhouse, and at home he tinkered with his HAM radio, developing the passion and technical know-how that

Jacobs, Murray

Murray Jacobs grew up in prewar Toronto, where he saw some of the city’s growing pains in the 1930s. That included the infamous Christie Pitts Riots of the 1930s, in which he was involved and was forced to confront the reality of local anti-Semitism. He enlisted in World War Two, where he would serve in

James, Alex

Alex James was born in 1920s Toronto, and he grew up largely in the city’s east end.  Alex shared with us his memories of interwar Toronto, and what it was like growing up against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  He remembered it as a time when everyone was the same, not knowing that they had

Jarvis, Mary

Mary Jarvis grew up in Ontario in the prewar era, in the Markham area just north of Toronto.  She grew up in a conservative, church-going family, in what was then a largely rural community, and Mary recalls chafing just a bit against those restrictions; like her friends, she would have loved to enjoy the movies and

Jeffery, Fred

Fred Jeffery is a lifelong Mainer. Born in 1918, he grew up in South Portland, and when World War Two began, he was able to graduate from college before entering the Coast Guard Academy. Unhappy with his experiences there, he decided to try something new, making the decision to enter the Marine Corps. Training took him to

Jennings, Lara

Lara Jennings was born and raised in Grimsby, Ontario, and lived a sound childhood. She attended a plethora of high schools prior to graduation and deciding to pursue a military path.  Jennings studied and graduated from Engineering at RMC prior to her choice of field in the military, which was the airforce. Beginning with regular bootcamp, she

Jensen, Eric

„Eric Jensen grew up living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. When he was 16 years old, he moved to Toronto. „When Eric first joined up they sent him to Windsor, Ontario where he was a part of the sea cadets. „After basic training Eric was sent to Halifax for a cooking course; two Montreal based chefs helped

Jones, Robert “Bud”

Robert “Bud” Jones was born in the St-Henri District of Montreal, and educated in the school districts of St. Henri, Montreal and Verdun , Quebec. Bud Jones is a decorated career soldier of 30 yrs, and a veteran of WWII who also served in Korea. He grew up in Depression-era Montreal, where Bud remembers his

Joyner, Mac

Mac Joyner was on May 24th, 1923 in Hamilton, Ontario. As a small child, he and his family moved all around North America, mainly in the southern United States, including California, Florida and Georgia. With all the moving, school life was quite difficult for Mac. After settling back into Canada, Mac grew up living the

Kaneko, Eishi

Kaneko Eishi served in the Japanese Imperial Army during World War Two.  From a working family near Kyoto, he grew up learning the traditions of interwar Japan, and he was imbued with the Shinto faith and an ardent athlete.  When the war came, he was identified as a strong math student, so the army prepared

Katz, Eugene

Eugene Katz was born in Dyszna, Poland in in 1927.  He was one of five children, growing up in a Jewish family not too far from Vilna; he recalls a difficult life, beset by hunger and poverty, but also filled with family and friends.  When war came in 1939, Eugene’s family was in eastern Poland,

Keeping, Andrea

Major Andrea Keeping grew up in the small farming community Russell, Manitoba and entered the University of Manitoba with the intention of studying to be an architect. Instead, she would end up finishing her education at Kingston’s Royal Military College and embark on a career that has seen her deployed in support roles to Afghanistan,

Kennedy, Frank

Frank Kennedy is a WW2 Veteran; he was born in Manitoba in 1923.  He is the 7th son in a family of 9, and he recalls some difficult early years as the family experienced the Great Depression in the Canadian Prairies.  The Dust Bowl swirled around them, and Frank’s father’s business faltered.  When the war came,  Frank and two brothers joined up.  Frank joined the

Kerr, George

George Kerr hails from Glasgow, Scotland.  He grew up in a working class neighbourhood between the war, when he remembers a life playing football and enjoying his friendships against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  When the war came, George chose the Royal Navy, where he was trained as an engineer and became an officer. 

Kerr, Helen

Born in Saskatchewan on August 2, 1919, Helen Louise Kerr was a former nurse who served in WWII. She is currently 99, and lives in Toronto. As a child, she lived on a farm with her family members, including six siblings, four of whom would serve in the war. Her mother was a teacher and

Kewen, Charlie

When the war first broke out, Mr.Kewen was a young man from Saskatoon who was still in school. On Oct 10, 1940, with support from his family, he joined the army after all of his friends had joined. Like his younger brother, he wanted to be an navigator, but instead worked as a mechanic on

Kilpatrick, John

John Kilpatrick joined at the age of 18 and became an officer at 20. He operated between Newfoundland and Londonderry, the North Sea, the Bay of Biscay, and D-Day.— His family believed that joining the war was a duty of being a Canadian citizen and they strongly supported his enlistment. John served honourably and then

King, Bill

Bill King served in the Canadian Forces from 1951-56.  Bill  grew up in Nova Scotia, against the backdrop of WW2.  He remembers well the sacrifices of other family members who served in that conflict, and he considers them the real veterans.  Bill’s service coincided with the Korean War, and although he did not go to

Kingsley, Craig

Craig Kingsley is an active member of the Canadian Forces.  He served aboard the HMCS Athabaskan in a 2000 action called Operation Megaphone, where crew from the Canadian destroyer boarded the Katie, a freighter returning Canadian military supplies to Canada after the Kosovo mission.  Craig was a member of the boarding party, and he helped

Kinnaird, Daphne

Daphne Kinnaird was born in London, England in 1921.  She grew up in the Kensington neighbourhood, raised by her father and grandmother.  She recalls a relatively good life before the war, with fond memories of friends and school.  When the war came, she remembers listening to the declaration of war on the BBC, followed by

Kirk, Ron

Ron Kirk served in the Canadian Forces in the post-WW2 period, when Canada’s peacekeeping reputation was being established. Ron served in the navy, and he spent time in Korea during that nation’s 1950-53 war. Ron and his shipmates patrolled the Korean west coast, doing their part to counter North Korea’s efforts to export communism. He

LaJeunesse, Jeremy

Major LaJeunesse was born in Timmins, Ontario and graduated from Sudbury’s Laurentian University prior to enlisting in the Canadian Forces in 2003. In 2009, he was deployed to Afghanistan as part of OP Athena. In February of 2016, Major LaJeunesse visited Crestwood as part of a delegation from the Canadian Forces College, where he was

Lakrits, Michael

Michael Lakrits is a veteran of the Soviet Red Army who fought on the eastern front during WW2. He attended an air force academy and was at first a machine gun and radio operator in a bomber. He joined when he was 19 and first faced the Nazis in Estonia in 1941. In December of

Lamantia, Larry

Larry Lamantia was born in Toronto, growing up in the city’s east end in the Pape-Danforth neighbourhood. His father ran a grocery market, and Larry grew up in the care of his grandmother, as his mother died when Larry was only five. The family experienced some of the anti-Italian backlash that spread through Toronto at

Lang, Sydney

Sydney Lang was born in Montreal on February 7th, 1923.  He currently resides in Toronto and is 92 years of age.  Sydney grew up during the Great Depression, in the city of Montreal.  He attended public school and was a Canadiens fan.  When the war broke out, Sydney was originally denied from the army because

Lavergne, Guy

Guy Lavergne is a veteran of the Korean War, where he fought alongside United Nations troops in the early 1950s. Guy’s stories remind us that there is an important legacy to capture about one of the 20th century’s “forgotten wars”, not to mention Canada’s important role in the U.N . We met Guy at Sunnybrook

Lawr, Sheldon

Sheldon Lawr was born in Brampton, Ontario on 1922, and grew up in nearby Georgetown. He is the second eldest of his three brothers. Due to the economic difficulties of the Great Depression, Sheldon Lawr never completed high school, instead he worked on farms (including a memorable journey to the Prairies via boxcar) and at

Lefrancois, Olivier

Major Olivier Lefrancois  joined the Canadian Forces in 1997, having made the decision to attend Royal Military College.  After initial training, he was deployed in Quebec, where he helped in the recovery efforts after the ice storm.  From there, Major Lefrancois was stationed in different parts of Canada, including North Bay, Resolute Bay and Cold Lake,

LeFresne, Tony

LCdr LeFresne enrolled in the Canadian Armed Forces as a MARS (Maritime Surface-Subsurface) Officer in June 1997. After 4 Years at the Royal Military College (RMC), he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Military and Strategic Studies and was posted to Victoria, BC to complete bridge officer training. Upon completion of this training, LCdr LeFresne

Leggatt, Charles

Charles Leggatt served in the British army during WW2.  Charles visited us at Crestwood several times, and on our final visit with him we visited him in his home.  Charles was a magnificent storyteller, and he shared with Crestwood students his numerous wartime exploits:  the Home Guard, his memories of his brother Kenneth, the Battle

Levy, Larry

Larry Levy served in the Canadian Army in northern Europe during the war. After enlisting, training, and the overseas journey, Larry went ashore at Normandy and fought his way through northern France, Belgium, and the Netherlands. Larry served with Signal Corps, and it was his task to locate enemy artillery. Larry brought many personal insights

Levy, Leonard

Mr. Leonard Levy was a pilot in the RCAF during WW2, where he completed 32 bombing runs with his Lancaster crew, including the raid on Dresden. A Jewish Canadian, Mr. Levy also gives students insights into the anti-Semitism of the period, both in Canada and in Europe. Mr. Levy is one of the original Memory

Lewis, Jack

Jack Lewis was born in Montreal in 1925, the youngest in a family where both parents were war veterans.  His father was a doctor, and his mother was a nurse, and they’d met in the battlefield hospital near Boulogne.  They spent much of the Great War in that one location, and Jack remembers that in

Lightstone, Mort

Mort Lightstone, at the age of 18, decided to join the Canadian Air Force. He was trained as an Air Force Navigator and graduated as an officer in April, 1952. His career continued for 28 years and totalled more than 6,600 hours of flying missions.  His job in Korea was mainly to deliver Canadian service

Loweth, Gerald

Gerald Loweth came to us courtesy of the Royal Canadian Military Institute, where he has been a featured speaker. Gerald continues to teach at University of Toronto’s Trinity College. Gerald brought a different perspective to Crestwood’s interviews. As an American, growing up in New Jersey against the backdrop of the Great Depression and war, Gerald

Lucas, Alison

Alison Lucas was born in Ottawa to parents that moved around frequently, since her father was in the Air Force.  Her mother was an Emergency Room nurse who took a “break” to manage the 3 kids and all the moves.  By the time she was in high school, she had moved 8 times, but was

Lustgarten, Michael

Michael Lustgarten was able to get out of Poland as the Nazi onslaught began in 1939. He made his way to Russia, where he was on the move, sought by both German and later Soviet authorities. His travels eventually took him to a Soviet work camp and later to Kazakstan and then finally on to

MacDonell, George

George MacDonell was shipped overseas early in the war; he and his fellow soldiers expected to be sent to England, but they were instead sent to Hong Kong, to help in the defence of that British colony. Overwhelmed by the Japanese attack in December 1941, George and his fellow Canadians fought valiantly, only surrendering when

Magan, Aaron

Col. Aaron Magan joined the American Army in 1991, following his undergraduate ROTC at Western Kentucky University.  He went into the Army Corps of Engineers and soon found himself rising through the ranks.  He attended a series of schools and courses in the American military, all the while furthering his training.  They included: the Ranger

Mahon, Albert

Albert Mahon was born into a large family in south London, England in 1923. He grew up in a working class neighbourhood, where school was not a top priority.  Instead Albert went to work, and much of his childhood and early years were spent working a variety of jobs, as well as helping with his

Manestar, John

John Manestar was born in 1922 in Croatia.  He came to Canada with his mother because his father had come 6 years earlier, looking for work.  The depression hit in 1929 right after they moved into their house.  His family along with others had trouble with money, but they learned to make ends meet.  John met

Mann, Charles

Charles Mann is a Canadian veteran of World War Two who served with the Black Devils.  Originally from Port Hope, Charles and his family were affected by the Great Depression, like so many other Canadian families.  Charles left school for work, but with the coming of the war, he enlisted in the army, and when

Marshall, Margueritte

Margueritte Marshall was born April 20, 1926 in Hamilton, Ontario, the oldest of thirteen children.  The family moved to Niagara Falls, where her father ran a farm and worked at the Carborundum Plant.  Margueritte remembers wanting to be a teacher, but with a family that size and the reality of the Great Depression, she quit

Martin, Bill

Bill Martin was born in 1925 in Toronto, into a family of four brothers.  He attended Northern High School, where he played sports and developed an interest in geography.  When the war came, Bill chose the navy, and he was assigned to the minesweeper HMCS Burlington, where he was a stoker.  He spent the war

Martin, Jack

Jack Martin is from Toronto.  He grew up the city’s east end, dealing with the realities of the Great Depression.  From a military family, Jack was in it from the beginning; he enlisted in the Queen’s Own Rifles, and set about training.  A training accident left him deaf in one ear, but as his officer

Martini, Wilfred

Wilfred Martini grew up in a little mining town in Germany called Hamm. He was 11 years old when the war started. He enrolled in the Hitler Youth Program and was drafted into the Artillery at 15 years old. He was then sent home for a year then drafted into the infantry. He fought Americans

Maslen, Ken

Ken Maslen grew up in prewar London. When the war broke out he served on a tugboat, until he saw his chance to join the RAF’s Air Sea rescue branch. He served there in a variety of English Channel postings through the first half of the war, where he was involved in many rescues. Later

Matheson, Dan

Major Daniel Matheson is a current member of the Canadian Forces, who hails from Indian Harbour, Nova Scotia, a small fishing community just outside Halifax.  He joined the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) in 1997 right out of High School under the Regular Officer Training Plan and attended Royal Military College in St Jean-sur-Richelieu, QC and

Maxwell, Martin

Martin Maxwell was born in 1924, in the city of Vienna. He grew up amidst difficult circumstances in the 1930s, when Hitler come to power. On December 31, 1938, Martin and his brother left Austria to go to Great Britain on the Kindertransport. Martin was adopted by a family there. In 1942, he joined the

McCowan, Jack

Jack McCowan was born in 1919 in the then agricultural hamlet of Scarborough, Ontario.  His family owned a farm in the area, and Jack grew up in a large family and accustomed to the hard work of life on the farm.  When the war came, Jack enlisted in the RCAF, though he had started a

McDonald, Kelvin

Kelvin McDonald served in the Canadian Forces from the 1970s to the 1990s.  During that time he was deployed as a peacekeeper on multiple occasions, helping to set a high bar for Canadians serving overseas.  Kelvin was first deployed to Egypt, maintaining the peace along the Sweetwater Canal during the time of the Egypt-Israel 1973

McIlroy, Frances

Frances McIlroy was born on June 16th, 1917, in Madoc Ontario.  She is the eldest of one brother and one sister.  She went to school in Madoc; later on she went to Kingston General Hospital to train as a nurse.  From there she became an army nurse.  Frances went overseas in June 1944, right as

McLean, George

George McLean is a proud member of the 48th Highlanders.  Born in prewar Toronto, George grew up in the 20s and 30s, against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  When war came, George hoped to enlist alongside his comrades in the 48th, but his efforts did not come to fruition as George’s eyesight was not

McLean, Roger

Roger McLean was born in Scituate, Massachusetts.  An avid baseball fan and player, he went to Andover and Princeton, and went on to serve as a forward artillery observer in Korea and after the Armistice worked with the local Korean population building a primary school with materials sent from the U.S.  He received his discharge

McMichael, Reginald

Major Reginald McMichael joined the Canadian Forces in 2001, having made the decision to attend Royal Military College.  After initial training, he was deployed in Alberta as a member of the PPCLI, and he rose through the ranks as an officer.  From there, Major McMichael was sent on several overseas deployments, serving in Afghanistan at

McPhee, Jim

Jim McPhee served in the RCAF during the Second World War. Jim grew up in northern Ontario, not too far from the Sault; Jim came from a large family, and lived not too far from Bruce Mines . Jim remembers going to a one-room schoolhouse in his early years, as well as work on the

McTaggart, Phil

Phil McTaggart served in the coastal patrols during World War Two, on the watch for German U-Boats. He presently lives in the Sunnybrook Residence for World War Two veterans, where he was interviewed by Crestwood students Andrew Spanton and Brandon Kleshch.

Mendham, Frank

Frank Mendham was born in Toronto in 1924; like many his age he grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, dealing with the realities of day-to-day life.  When the war came, Frank went into the cavalry, like his father before him.  By the time of the Second World War, tanks had replaced horses. 

Metcalfe, Walter

We met Walter Metcalfe on a field trip to the Sunnybrook Veterans Wing in the fall of 2012. Walter served in the RCAF in World War Two, when he flew numerous missions as part of Bomber Command.  He enlisted and served in the infantry in the Korean War as well.  Walter’s memories went beyond the

Middleton, Bob

Originally from Toronto’s east end, Bob Middleton is a proud Canadian who served in the RCAF during the Second World War. Bob grew up in the Beaches neighbourhood of Toronto, and when he visited mr. Masters’ Grade 12 history class, he shared remarkable memories of what it was like to grow up in prewar Toronto.

Millhausen, Bill

Bill Millhausen was born on January 10, 1918 in Moose Jaw Saskatchewan.  He went to university, where he studied math and engineering and this led him on his World War Two path.  He became an engineer who built bridges in the war.  He was recruited by the head of CN rail, a World War 1

Milsom, John

John Milsom was born in Toronto in 1921.  Growing up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, his hobbies included a crystal radio set and visits to Dufferin Airfield, where he developed a love for flying.  Both habits would prove invaluable in the war to come.  In the 30s, he was fortunate to attend Upper

Moore, Dalton

Dalton Moore was born in the hamlet of Horning’s Mills in 1931; when he was four the family moved to Toronto – right in the midst of the Great Depression. Dalton’s early years happened against that economic backdrop, as well as the subsequent war. When World War Two came along, Dalton’s older brothers went off

Morgan, Don

Don Morgan is a Canadian World War Two veteran who grew up in rural Ontario.  When the time came to enlist, Don chose the air force, and after considerable training in different locations across Canada, he was ready to be a pilot.  Further training in England ensued, and Don and his crew were ready to

Moritsugu, Frank

When WW2 broke out, all Japanese-Canadians were labeled as enemy aliens were sent to the internment camps. Mr. Moritsuguand his brother were separated from his family; while Mr. Moritsugu’s family were sent to Tashme camp, he and his brother Ken were sent to Yard Creek Road. Despite the treatment accorded his family by their own

Mowbray, Clint

Lt.-Col. Clint Mowbray is an active member of the Canadian Forces, serving with the RCAF in the Air Sea Rescue division.  He has served all over Canada and has been involved in numerous rescue missions across the country; he has also served overseas in Afghanistan as part of the ISAF force. Lt.-Col. Mowbray was stationed

Moyen, Leon

Leon Moyen is a Korean War veteran who came from the small country of Luxembourg. He was born in 1930 and he enlisted in the army at the age of 16. When Leon first arrived in Korea, his main task was to do patrols. According to him, this job wasn’t always dangerous. Eventually he was

Murphy, Paul

Paul Murphy served in the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War.  Paul served aboard several ships, notably the Cobalt and the Wallaceburg, and he was involved in the RCN’s convoy system in the western Atlantic, working the triangle between New York City and Newfoundland.  Paul’s ships would escort convoys in that zone, both

Myatt, George

George Myatt served in Canada’s merchant marine during WW2. As such, George was a crewman aboard a number of cargo vessels, and he visited many ports of call around the world, especially in Europe and Africa. George saw his share of danger working in this often neglected part of canada’s military force; one ship he

Neville, Charles

Charles Neville served with the British Royal Engineers during World War Two.  In earlier days he grew up in southern England, near Kent, where he attended the prestigious Cranbrook School.  He studied languages, and Charles recalls that his parents a life in the diplomatic corps, but even as a young boy engineering proved to be

Newman, Jack

Jack Newman served in the Canadian Armed Forces during the war. After signing up, he was at Manning Depot at the Ex, followed by training at Brantford and Petawawa. He was assigned to the 4th Battery, 3rd Anti-Tank Regiment and shipped off to England. After time in Aldershot, he was sent with his regiment to

Newton, Fred

Fred Newton was born in Sarnia, Ontario in 1925. He attended Sarnia Collegiate Institute, and lived in ‘luxury’ throughout his childhood. In May of 1943, at the age of 18, he enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force. After completing training he was stationed overseas but the whole draft was pulled in Halifax due to

Noddle, Jim

James Noddle was born over a bakery in the East End of Toronto to a poor large family. Growing up, he became particularly fond of trucks, and this interest continued on post-war. When the war began, he wasn’t too interested in it; however, soon he joined. His main duties in the war in Italy included

Nussbaum, Jule

Jule Nussbaum has lived in Toronto his entire life. Jule enlisted in the Canadian Air Force against his father’s wishes and decided to become a wireless radio operator. He served honourably in the RCAF and returned to build a life in canada after the war. Jule was interviewed in his room at Sunnybrook by Zack

O’Donnell, Robert

Major O’Donnell joined the Canadian Forces after completing his Bachelor’s Degree in English and History.  After initial training, he was deployed in western Canada, where he worked at avalanche control in the Rockies.  In 2005, he was asked to go to Afghanistan, where he led 30 soldiers in an artillery unit, providing support to coalition

O’Pray, Gerry

Gerry O’Pray served in the Canadian Forces during the Cold War era, and as such he participated in a number of peacekeeping missions from the period. Most notably Gerry was deployed in the Congo in the early 60s, where he was part of the Signals Corps, and in Gaza and the Suez in the mid-60s,

Olley, George

George Olley was born May 10, 1925 in London, Ontario.  George’s parents divorced when he and his sister were quite young, and for a time George and Rose lived with their father, but work and family proved a difficult combination, and George ended up in an orphanage from age 9-14.  He went to school during

Parks, Jim

Jim Parks was born September 22, 1924, in Winnipeg, Manitoba.  He grew up there during the hard days of the Great Depression, making money anywhere he could, selling magazines and blocks of ice.  When the war came along, Jim was in high school, and he remembers learning about the war in history class. He joined

Parucha, Alejo

Alejo Parucha fought against the Japanese Military Forces in World War II, under the United States Armed Forces in the Far East USAFFE. Captured at Bataan, he joined the Infamous Death March and was held as a Prisoner of War for 9 months, only released on December 25, 1942 as a Gift of Christmas. From

Pegg, Mary

We met Mary Pegg at the Castle Peak Retirement Suites in Bracebridge, where she presently lives.  Mary is one of several authors/editors who assembled At Your Age, a collection of stories of those who live there.  The residents felt it was important for them to record their stories, which serve as a great entry point into

Peon, Bill

Bill Peon served in the Canadian army during the Second World War.  He was born in Toronto, where he grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  With the coming of the war, he enlisted, and with basic training he was assigned to the Service Corps, designated as a truck driver.  He spent additional

Pham Cong Lien

Pham Cong Lien lives outside Hanoi, Vietnam, in a state-sponsored home for the veterans of what the Vietnamese call the “American War”.  Mr. Pham turned eighteen and was conscripted by the North Vietnamese Army (NVA) in 1967-68, just as the American involvement was reaching its apex.  Forced to leave school and his family behind, he

Pike, Herb

Herb Pike is a Canadian veteran of the Second World War, and a proud member of the 48th Highlanders.  Herb grew up in prewar Toronto, where he remembers living a relatively good life, even against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  When in Toronto, Herb attended Bowmore Road Public School, and then Central Tech; he

Popov, Mark

Major Mark Popov is an active member of Canada’s armed forces. He has served in Yugoslavia and has just completed his second tour in Afghanistan. He knows the region very well and has built a strong connection with his troops and the local community. As a Major he has to maintain a positive attitude to

Prescott, Mary

Mary Prescott was a CWAC during the war, reminding us of the many varied and important roles that Canadian women played during the years 1939-45. Mary was an entertainer, and as the war wound down, she sang and danced her way through Europe, keeping the troops entertained as they brought peace to the liberated nations

Pressnail, Lloyd

Lloyd Pressnail grew up during the times of the Great Depression in Canada. He was considered “wealthy” because his father had a job. He always loved sailing, so when he was 16 he joined the Royal Canadian Navy as a seaman. But the thrill of the service ran out fast for him and it helped

Preston, Harry

Harry Preston served in the Canadian army during World War Two.  He grew up in western Canada, in and around Winnipeg, where Harry and his family experienced the realities of the Depression.  Harry kept himself busy though, and with friends, he got involved in the militia and the Sea Cadets, where he was able to

Preston, Joan

Joan Preston was born in London, England. She was a tap dancer since she was very little. Joan now is 94. During the war, she spent 5 and a half years in the WAAF, the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force. This was from 1941-1946, during which time she worked for Bomber Command in England and Sri

Prideaux, Mel

Mel Prideaux was born in Regina, Saskatchewan.   He grew up during the Great Depression, and had to face many challenges that an average family had to face.  He enlisted in the army with a couple friends before they were to go to university , but Mel was encouraged to become a training officer instead of

Procto, George

George Procto served in Canada’s military in the years after World War Two, the “Golden Age” of peacekeeping and diplomacy. George hails from rural New Brunswick, and as he recalls, he was anxious to leave the farm and school. The military represented a different life, so he enlisted and began his travels across Canada, from

Queen, Lloyd

Mr. Lloyd Queen served in the Canadian Army during the war. After training, he was commissioned as a ieutenant and sent to England. He went ashore in the first wave of the Normandy invasion and was in France for about a month before being deployed to the Netherlands and the Battle of the Scheldt. He

Ratcliffe, Richard

Richard Ratcliffe was born on the 16th of June 1928, in Haileybury, Ontario. After his father died in 1938 his family moved to St.Catharines, Ontario. He joined the Navy in 1945 when he was 17 years old. He went to Naval College in Royal Rhodes in BC and graduated as a midshipman. He went to

Rees, Frank

Frank Rees is from Toronto.  He grew up in the city’s east end, against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  He attended Danforth Tech and served in the reserve army during the early part of the war.  When the time came for him to join up, Frank chose the RCAF – he remembers that it

Reid, Jack

Jack Reid was born in Toronto, and joined the Royal Canadian Navy in 1943. Working as a depth charge operator on the HMCS Longueil, Mr. Reid participated in numerous convoys of military and supply ships making the treacherous journey across the north Atlantic. After the end of the war (and one last convoys across the

Reynolds, John

John Reynolds served in the Canadian Forces during WW2. He had tried to join the Air Force in 1940 but was considered too young, so a year later he tried to join the Navy but was unable to go because his work was considered essential. When they actually let him join the forces, he joined

Rhind, John

John (Jack) Rhind served in the Canadian Forces in the Second World War.  John grew up in the Rosedale neighbourhood of Toronto, pursuing his degree in finance when the war came along.  John opted to go into artillery, and as an officer he assumed his command.  After training stints in Canada and England, John’s regiment

Richard, Cliff

Major Richard was born in Edmonton, Alberta in 1976. As a rural kid, he played the mandatory minor hockey until age 14 when he joined the Air Cadets and became hooked. He joined the Canadian Armed Forces as an Artillery Officer in 1994 under the Regular Officer Training Plan. He completed a degree in mechanical

Robus, Wally

Wally Robus was originally from England. He immigrated to Canada before WWII. Wally was in the Canadian air force during the war, and was posted to a number of bases in Canada.  After the war, he got married and raised a family in Canada. Wally presently lives in the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing, where he was interviewed

Roles, Fred

Fred Roles was born in 1920s London, the son of a firefighting family.  He vividly remembers the beginning of the Blitz in 1940; when his neighbourhood was bombed, he and his mother had the good fortune to be at the back of the family home.  He vowed to shoot down those German planes as soon

Rowe, John

John Rowe was born in 1925 in Toronto, and he grew up in the city’s east end, in the Beach. John shared with us his memories of interwar Toronto, and what it was like growing up against the backdrop of the Great Depression. He remembered it as a time when everyone was the same, not

Rubinstein, Len

A South African Jew, Mr. Leonard Rubinstein volunteered to fight with the British 8th Army the “Desert Rats” in WW2. After seeing action in Bardia, he was captured and spent the remainder of the war in Axis POW camps, where he was fortunate to keep his religious identity secret from the Gestapo. Mr. Rubinstein came

Rudd, June

June Rudd was born in Northumberland, England and raised in Manchester in 1924. June shares her story of wartime life in England, including evacuations, air raid shelters and rationing. Like many young British women, June contributed directly to the war effort by serving as a WREN, or member of the Women’s Royal Naval Service, beginning

Sander, Gunter

Gunter Sander grew up in Germany in the 1930s. Like virtually all German teenagers of the time he joined the Hitler Youth and later became a part of the national work force. When he was brought into the military, he was initially sent to guard islands off the coast of the Netherlands, against a potential

Sanders, Harry

Harry Sanders sailed the oceans of the world during the Second World War.  Born in the small seaside community of South Shields, in Great Britain, he answered a Marconi company ad on the topic of wireless operators, and soon his training was underway, as he left school and South Shields behind him.  Soon named a

Sanford, Chuck

Chuck Sanford was in the USAAF in World War Two. A B-17 pilot, he trained all across the United States before being shipped to Europe. Stationed in England, he flew a number of missions before an injury sent him back to the US. The army kept him on for period, using him to look at

Sanson, Bill

L Cdr Bill Sanson is a member of the present-day Canadian Forces, serving in the Canadian Navy, where he helps to respond to the many crises where intervention is necessary.  As L Cdr Sanson notes, Canada is a maritime nation, and the nature of the interconnected maritime world makes the Canadian Navy very relevant, from

Scot-Brown, Charles

Born into a military family, Charles Scot-Brown said there was never a doubt about his enlistment. After growing up during the Depression, Charles joined the army and was trained as an infantryman. He was sent overseas to England and went across the Channel on June 6, 1944, as part of the second wave of Allied

Scott, Al

Al Scott grew up in 1930s Britain. He joined the Home Guard, and he remembers them having no weapons, so they inserted the WW1 Ross Rifle bayonets into gas pipes. Al was called up to enlist in 1942 and went to the infantry depot and spent eight months there, until he was posted to a

Scott, Cliff

Cliff Scott was born March 4, 1926 in Toronto.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression and the early years of the war itself, when he attended Humberside Collegiate in the city’s west end.  Cliff’s early life was marked by the death of his father, a Toronto police officer, while Cliff was

Scott, Doug

Doug Scott was born in Toronto.  He graduated from Upper Canada College and the University of Toronto.  From there, Doug enlisted in the Canadian army, where he stayed  for five years.  During that time, the Korean War took place, and Doug was deployed overseas.  While in Korea, Doug served in the unique position of sports

Shaw, Jimmy

Jimmy Shaw was born in 1925 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.  He attended St. John’s College.  His father was in World War I and fought at Vimy Ridge. His mother was a teacher.   As a kid he played many sports, his favorite being hockey.  When the war started he joined the RCAF at a Bloor and Spadina

Shontaler, Jim

Jim Shontaler was born in the Canadian west, growing up in the difficult days of the Great Depression.  As there were some family problems, Jim spent many of his early years in an orphanage.  With the war underway and with no firm direction before him, he joined up as soon as he was able, heading

Short, Norm

Norm Short served in the Canadian Army during the Second World War.  Born in Cornerbrook, Newfoundland, the young Norm moved to Quebec along with his family when they settled in Shawinigan Falls.  When the war came, Norm joined up in Montreal, as part of the Essex Scottish Regiment.  he completed his basic training and waited

Slater, John

John Slater was born in Toronto in 1922. He grew up during the Great Depression, and his father had to take care of the family. Mr. Slater didn’t enlist in the war at first; he was asked to join. When he was in Europe he made some friends in Scotland and Britain. Mr. Slater and

Small, Larry

Larry Small was born in Toronto in 1920.  He grew up in the neighbourhoods of the city’s downtown core, against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  The son of Jewish immigrants, Larry had to leave school when he was 14, when he went to work to help support his family.  He worked as a newsboy,

Smith, Doug

Doug Smith  served in the Canadian Forces during the Cold War era, and as such he participated in a number of peacekeeping missions from the period. Most notably Doug was deployed in the Suez in the late 50s, during the period of Nasser’s presidency. As such Doug followed the actions of the initial UN peacekeeping force,

Smith, Gordon B.

Gordon B. Smith was born in the east end of Toronto, not far from the Don Jail. He lost one brother when he was growing up in that neighbourhood, to a household accident. Gord attended Eastern Commerce, but he didn’t graduate, instead entering the work force. When the war came, Gord’s remaining older brother enlisted

Smith, Gordon E.

Gordon E. Smith was born in Humber Bay, Toronto, on March 19, 1925.  He grew up in Depression-era Toronto, and left school, working on the family farm and a machine shop.  In 1944, Gord joined up, knowing that he was soon to be called by the military.  Initially he joined the Artillery, and completed his

Smith, Mike

Mike Smith was born in the USSR, in the former republic of Belarus.  He grew up near Pinsk, in a traditional Jewish family.  When the war came to the USSR in 1941, he joined the Soviet Red Army, where he became a member of the Scouts’ Brigade.  Doing some of the most dangerous work behind

Smith, Russell

Russell Smith was born in 1919 in Toronto, and he grew up in Toronto during the interwar years.  Russell remembers well the difficulties of those Great Depression years, especially as he grew up in a family of eleven children, and his single mother needed all the help she could get.  The third eldest, Russell left

Smith, Ted

Crestwood has been fortunate to visit the Sunnybrook Veterans Wing many times since we started our partnershipin 2008. Many Sunnybrook veterans have shared their impressions of the war and of the surrounding period. None has been able to do more effectively than Ted Smith, who we met in May 2012. Ted was a pilot in

Snyder, Ben

Ben Snyder was a bombardier on a B-24 in the USAF during World War Two. When the war broke out, ben was in school, but like most of his classmates he quickly found himself in uniform in the days after Pearl Harbour. Ben ended up in the air force, and training took him all over

Speedie, Bob

Bob Speedie was born in 1926 in Crieff, Scotland. Bob’s father was a building contractor and due to his job, Bob’s family moved to London, England on May 2, 1926; he was 3 months old at that time. He grew up in London as a Cockney and attended the London Public School. Bob was in

Squigna, Victor

Victor Squigna hails from the west end of Toronto, where he grew up in the interwar years.  Victor recalls that conditions in the Great Depression were not too bad for his family; he in fact had a car, and worked at the local gas station.  When his 18th birthday came in 1942, Victor made his

Stephen, John

John Stephen was 22 when the war broke out. He had just became a carpenter after 5 years of training. He was in the Merchant Navy doing Trans-Atlantic runs from Halifax to England. John did 31 Trans-Atlantic runs through the whole war. He was never in a ship that was attacked. John Stevens served in

Stewart, Donald

Donald Stewart was born in Vancouver B.C. He served with the Royal Canadian Navy Merchant fleet. Growing up Donald had been a sea cadet and he always admired sailors.  As it was wartime and all of his friends had signed up, he wanted to do his part. So Donald had to go through basic training

Stohn, John

John Stohn originally came from the U.S., but he moved to Canada at a young age, when his father’s work led the family to Granby, Quebec.  The family did well there, and they were largely insulated from the devastating impacts of the Great Depression.  John remembers his youth with some fondness, and that it prepared

Stohn, Suzie

Suzie Stohn was born in Toronto, growing up in the “Village”, not too far from Russell Hill Road in the city’s north end.  Her family was well off, fortunately insulated from the effects of the Depression.  Suzie lived a good life, enjoying school at BSS and in a boarding school in Quebec’s Eastern Townships.   From

Summersides, Jim

Jim Summersides was born in Welland, Ontario, and grew up with his mother, father and siblings. When the war broke out, Jim decided to join his classmates and enlist in the infantry. He became a part of the Canadian 48th Highlanders and was then shipped overseas to England. Having arrived in England, he was then

Sutton, Gerald

Gerald Sutton was born in Uckfield, Sussex, England on July 23, 1925, and he attended grammar school on a scholarship in the historic county town of Lewes.  While there he watched the Battle of Britain fought overhead in 1940.  With that in mind – and despite the danger of U-boat attacks, his mother brought him

Swirski, Walter

Walter Swirski was born in Poland on May 7, 1922.  His family lived in a small village, where they were prosperous farmers; Walter’s father owned a share in a flour mill, and had been an officer in the Soviet-Polish war.  Walter had one brother and was going to school when the Second World War broke

Switzer, Bill

Bill Switzer was born in 1923 in Midland, Ontario.  He grew up in a “nice town to have a family” where he played, had fun and worked after he was done school.  He came from a large family with 5 brothers and 5 sisters.  His father was a mailman throughout most of his life,and most importantly during the depression.  When the war came, Bill chose

Talbot, Bill

Bill Talbot grew up against the backdrop of 1930s Toronto.  When his father, a World War One veteran, passed away, Bill dropped out of school to help his mother make ends meet.  When the war came along, Bill enlisted, eventually finding his way into the First Canadian Parachute Regiment.  Training took place in both the

Taylor, Heber

Heber Taylor was born in Carbonear, Newfoundland and Labrador.  When the war came along, Heber began working for Bell.  In 1941 he decided to enlist.  Heber volunteered so that he would be able to choose where he would serve. With the decision in his hands, he chose to fight as part of the Royal Canadian

Trull, Madge

Madge Trull was born July 22, 1922.  Madge is a Londoner, though she was born in Chile; her father was involved in the import-export trade.  He brought his young family back to England as his children were growing up, as he wanted them to be raised and educated in the proper English tradition.  Madge attended

Tymchuk, Bill

Bill Tymchuk was born in Ukraine, when it was under Polish control; he went to school there  for 2 years and immigrated to Canada in 1930 (his father had settled down in Canada in 1928). His family was on the farm, and he started school and learned English quickly. Later his family went to Stayner, Ontario and

van Taack, Emma

Emma van Taack lived in Holland when the war broke out. She witnessed the German assault on Rotterdam and lived through the occupation. Becoming a teenager during the war, Emma joined a Dutch resistance cell, where she actively fought against the German forces. She assisted Allied soldiers, acted as a messenger, and risked her life

Van Wart, Jean

Jean Van Wart presently lives at Sunnybrook, where she was interviewed by Charlie Nogas, Gabe Hirson, and Jacob Hanning, in her room in the Veterans’ Wing in February 2017.  Jean was born in Quebec, and when the war came around she was attending Carleton University in Ottawa.  Like many women in her day, she enlisted

Vassair, John

John Vassair  served in the Canadian Forces during the Cold War era, and as such he participated in a number of peacekeeping missions from the period. Most notably John was deployed in Korea and the Suez in the 50s, during and after the conflicts in both of those nations. As such John followed the actions of the

Vencel, Mike

Mike Vencel served in the Canadian Navy during the Cold War era.  He joined up in the 1950s, fresh out of high school in southern Ontario, with the goal of pursuing a trade.  Mike set his sights on becoming an electrician’s mate, and he served in this capacity on several ships, notably the HMCS Assiniboine

Voitinsky, Evgeny

Evgeny Voitinsky served in the  Red Army in the Great Patriotic War.  Evgeny grew up in Leningrad before the war, but after the German invasion of June 1941, Evgeny and his mother relocated to Kazakstan, where the teenaged Evgeny adapted to the new realities of wartime life. He worked at this time in a factory,

Waddell, John

John Waddell served in the RCN as WW2 came to a close. His overseas duty came late in the war, so John was fortunate to avoid combat and the dangerous convoys that made up so much RCN duty. He was able to see many places though, literally going around the world and visiting the ports

Wagar, Karl

Karl Wagar served in the Canadian Forces during the 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s. Karl hails from the town of Deseronto, in Prince Edward County; he enlisted at the suggestion of a veteran he met at the local Legion, recalling that the decision set him on a better life path. He boarded that jet airplane

Wallace, Al

 Al Wallace was born in Toronto in1920 on Brock Avenue (which was off Bloor Street).  Al and his family lived on Gladstone Avenue.  He went to Dovercourt  Public School, which was on Hallam Street,  and he graduated in 1938.  After this, he went to Central Tech for one year.  However, Al was unable to go

Warford, Jim

Jim Warford was in the Canadian army during World War Two. Born in England in 1922, Jim grew up in Hamilton, Ontario, against the backdrop of the Great Depression, attending school and very active in sports. Jim and a friend joined the militia before the war, knowing that war was on the way. When his

Warner, Joe

Joe Warner is a Canadian who joined the fighting in Israel in 1948 because he felt “it won’t be worth being a Jew elsewhere if Israel did not survive.” Joe had graduated high school in Toronto in the midst of WW2, and he had enlisted in the RCAF, and began training in different parts of

Watt, Janet

Janet Watt was one of so many women who entered the armed forces during the Second World War.  Janet chose to go in the navy, and she became one of the WRENs.  As Janet entered the services at the end of the war, her time in the military was limited, though her experiences are very

Weiss, Arthur

Arthur Weiss was born in Philadelphia in 1925.  Growing up against the backdrop of war, Arthur was singled out by the military for his mathematical prowess.  The military was grooming him for a role in the Manhattan Project, but as Arthur recalls, there was a surfeit of physicists by 1945, and with the war winding

White, Don

Don White was born in Oshawa, Ontario on August 9, 1924.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, attending school in Oshawa and then enlisting after Grade 12.  He had joined the militia at the age of 16, and at 18 he joined the regular forces, and was quickly sent out to

White, Tom

Born in 1926, Tom White grew up in Toronto against the backdrop of the Great Depression.  He remembers his mother’s recipes from that time period, and the afternoons spent at Saturday matinees.  He also remembers his schooling, and the lessons from an Oakwood Collegiate geography teacher that were imparted to students who thought they’d soon

Willcocks, Jim

Jim Willcocks celebrated his 100th birthday not too long ago, and an article in his local Orillia newspaper notes, he still likes to go out dancing. We met Jim courtesy of the Royal Canadian Legion in Orillia, and Scott Masters interviewed Jim in July 2018. Jim Second World War service took place in Canada, as

Williams, Don

Don Williams served in the Canadian army during the Korean War.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Second World War, experiencing the ups-and-downs alongside fellow Canadians during that changing time.  As the Cold War escalated, he enlisted for his own war, and with basic training he was assigned to the PPCLI, designated as

Winer, Lorne

Lorne Winer first visited Crestwood in February 2012, at the age of 95. He sat down with Canadian History 10 students Maxime Bernier and Nathan George, and told them about his life both before and after the war. Lorne grew up in Toronto, where he remembered life in the Ward during the depths of Depression.

Wood, Anne

Anne Wood was born in Langford, Ireland; she married John Wood, aCanadian bomber pilot and together they had four children. Anne voluntarily entered the war, not to fight, but to be of help and to defend her country. She entered with one of her best friends, who became a nurse. Anne wanted to be more

Yaphe, Wilf

Mr. Wilf Yaphe was born in Toronto Canada in 1920. He went to school in Toronto and Montreal. He worked in a drug store and he later went to enlist in the war effort but he didn’t have the university credit to be a pilot in the air force, so they sent him to a

Yatabe, Minoru

Mr. Minoru Yatabe served in Canada’s armed forces during WW2, while his family and other Japanese-Canadians were battling racism and internment on Canada’s home front. Mr. Yatabe originally was from British Columbia, but he was sent to Ontario for the early part of the war, where he worked on a farm. When he turned 18,

Zarembo, Michael

Michael Zarembo is a Lithuanian Jew, one of so many overwhelmed with the terrible events that befell his people and region during the war.  1941 saw the initiation of that horror…Germany initiated Operation Barbarossa, and within days Michael’s family was under the heel of the Nazi regime.  Life became increasingly difficult in the ghettos that were

Zuber, Pieter

Pieter Zuber  served in the Canadian Forces during the Cold War era, and as such he participated in a number of peacekeeping missions from the period. Most notably Pieter was deployed in the Suez in the late 50s, during the period of Nasser’s presidency. As such he followed the actions of the initial UN peacekeeping force,