Veteran Stories:
Herbert Louis Hack

Army

  • Photo of Herbert Hack driving a jeep in Willensaven, Holland during the Occupation in 1944.

    Courtest of Herbert Hack
  • Mr. Hack is sitting on the back of the truck he drove in Aurich, Germany 1944.

    Courtesy of Herbert Hack
  • Photo of the Army Camp for basic training taken in Vernon, BC in 1942.

    Courtesy of Herbert Hack
  • Photo of Herbert Hack with some of his comrades on board the Isle de France in 1946.

  • A swastika collected by Herbert Hack.

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"And I asked her why she did that. And she says, I just hope somebody’s putting flowers on the graves of my sons. And that kind of struck me because we’re all people."

Transcript

In Holland, we [the Canadian Scottish Regiment (Princess Mary’s)] had a bunch of German prisoners. We had to look after them and it was around Utrecht in Holland. I recall, I got my supper one time and I went to sit down and these three little boys come up. They just looked at me and you could tell, looking in their eyes, that they were hungry. So I gave them my supper and they took off with my utensils. And I thought, oh no, I’m not going to see them again. But sure enough, they came back and the utensils were cleaner than they’ve ever been. And they took off again. So I kind of, I went hungry for a while, but I thought, well, that’s only for a little while. But I’m glad I was able to do that for the boys. And oh, there was various things in Holland. There was a girl there that collaborated with Germans. They caught her on the bridge and they cut off her hair, and took off her clothes and let her go. It was quite a sight to see. The Dutch people were very grateful for what the Canadians had done for them. But they were very anti-somebody that was collaborating with Germans. I was in this town in Germany and this lady, German lady, went up to where our three air force guys were brought down and they were buried there. And she went up and put flowers on their grave. And I asked her why she did that. And she says, I just hope somebody’s putting flowers on the graves of my sons. And that kind of struck me because we’re all people. They were just people and here we were fighting against one another. And I was quite impressed with the way this lady was looking after the air force fellows that were brought down there. I think that’s the thing that struck me more than anything in Germany, was that the people weren’t all bad.
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