McBride, Willard

Willard McBride was born on January 23, 1924 in west Texas.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, and was forced to leave school in 5th Grade so he could help support the family.  Willard worked on farms, fought forest fires, picked cotton, dug ditches…in short he did what he had to

Gleeson, Mark

Mark Gleeson was born May 11, 1927 in Kokomo, Indiana, though he grew up largely in the Pittsburgh area, where his father worked for PPG after his return from the Great War.  Mark grew up in the 30s, against the backdrop of the Great Depression, but still enjoyed the typical American adolescence of the time. 

Pfeifer, Howard

Howard Pfeifer was born September 22, 1923 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  He grew up there against the backdrop of the Great Depression, so as a teenger he worked many jobs, delivering newspapers, pumping gas, and so on.  When the war came, a cousin of Howard’s told him about the merchant marine; Howard liked what he heard,

Brodie, Hugh

Hugh Brodie was born October 13, 1926 in Montreal, Quebec.  He grew up in the city against the backdrop of the Great Depression, attending school and playing football and hockey.  Hugh’s father was a doctor who passed away young, so Hugh was raised by his mother.  When the time came to choose his next step

Smith, Percy

Percy Smith was born May 10, 1923 in Ceylon.  His father worked in the British civil service there, and that is where Percy spent his early years.  The family returned to England in the late 1930s, as the clouds of war were closing in on Europe, and the world.  Percy was 16 at the start

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,

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

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

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

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