"I saw with the boys coming back, without an arm, without a head, legs, horrible. But there’s no choice in a war. You kill or you get killed."
I decided that [with] the engineers was the safest place [to be]. Turned out to be wrong. The engineers went in before the army soldiers, tanks, infantry, whatever - they went first. My platoon, had I not put my hand up as electrician, I was then transferred to the [Royal Canadian Army] Service Corps. And they sent me overseas with the Service Corps and I was there for about two and a half years in England and Holland.
When I went overseas, I went to visit my [old] platoon, wasn’t in the same camp. I found out where they were, I went there, in England, and I was walking along the road in England in their camp. And a sergeant come up to me and he says, what are you doing, soldier? I says, I’m looking for Platoon so-and-so and so-and-so. He says, why are you looking? I says, well, I was there and I want to meet my boys again and say hello. He says, you’re too late. I says, why? They all got killed. When they went over to build the roads, crossed the road into Holland, part of Germany at that time, they shot them all. Just like that. I got a picture of the whole platoon though.
So anyway, then I went overseas, as I said two and a half years I worked in the Service Corps, building buildings as an electrician. And then for a little while, I took my whole platoon that I was with, they were called the CREME, C-R-E-M-E, Royal Canadian Electrical Mechanical Engineers. And they decided that the whole platoon can go down to Brighton in England, near the coast, they said, we need stretcher bearers. I says, why? Because when I was in England, I saw these guys going one way, like south to the beach, Brighton. The guy that was with me at the time, I says to him, what’s going to happen, I says, no, he says, this is going to be D-Day. They’re going to invade the next few days. He says, eh, you’re crazy. I said, okay.
So they did, they all went to the ocean and overseas. What happened after that was very simple. I was a stretcher bearer for about a month or two and the things I saw with the boys coming back, without an arm, without a head, legs, horrible. But there’s no choice in a war. You kill or you get killed.