Veteran Stories:
Tom Green

Army

  • Prime Minister Louis St. Laurent inspects Tom Green's guncrew in 1953.

    Tom Green
  • A photograph of Tom Green taking at a Memory Project event in Victoria, British Columbia on November 2nd, 2011.

    Tom Green
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"They sent all these guys in, cooks and all this, they come running and they’d be blowing these bugles and everything and they’d normally get killed by the mines and us in the artillery and then the main troops would come in behind them again."

Transcript

Dust and mud, that’s all mostly we seen. And the city of Seoul [South Korea] was flattened right down, we went through there, there wasn’t much left of Seoul at this time. But we weren’t on any paved roads at any time I remember. Mostly on dusty roads, dust and mud, that’s what I remember most in Korea. Up to your ankles sometime. Well, my operation was number one a gun, on the old 25 pounder [field gun]. That’s the number one charge for the detachment of five guys. Oh, we were engaged quite a lot. One good one I remember when they tried to overrun the, just before the end of the war, they tried to overrun the RCRs [an abbreviation for the Royal Canadian Regiment] positions and we fired on our DFLs, defensive fire lines, so when we do that, they go to ground in their shelters there and we mostly stop firing HE [High Explosive] and we fire CVT [Controlled Variable Time] or time fuse to be programmed over them so they wouldn’t end on the ground, on their hoochies [shelters], whatever they were in up there. So we’d go to firing HE, not HE, we wouldn’t fire high explosive, we’d fire out controlled variable time fuse and fuses that we set, like handset fuses. The variable time fuses just come in there and just come in and just about 60 feet off the ground, she’d explode from this little, send little radars, beep, beep, beep and away she’d go. Lieutenant [George] Ruffee, he was the OP officer for us, he got the MC, military cross but the young guy, Gunner Walsh, lance bombardier I guess he was, he was a signaler and he was keeping all this going and he only got the MID, mention in dispatches. So I thought that was kind of, where the officer got the MC, that’s a pretty high military [award], I thought that Walsh should have got at least the MM [Military Medal] because he was right there with the officer, keeping the lines open. We liked to be on the land line centre or on the air lines, I don’t know, but he was the signaler. So I thought he got just Mention In Dispatches, I thought he should have got the MM, military medal at least. I was a little bit shafted with that. Not at Mr. Ruffee because Mr. Ruffee was a fine man. It wasn’t his fault, I know who authorized him to get the MC but he sure didn’t like the gunner getting anything. I didn’t their [enemy] tactics. Apparently, what they used to do in their tactics, send all these guys over, hardly trained guys, that would come in in front and then the regular guys are these guys got pretty chewed up, they come behind them. So I didn’t like the Chinese tactics, they didn’t have much for bodies or their troops. Because I hear they sent all these guys in, cooks and all this, they come running and they’d be blowing these bugles and everything and they’d normally get killed by the mines and us in the artillery and then the main troops would come in behind them again. So I didn’t think much of their tactics. I think they were pretty, their army, not their people but you know, this was the thing, you’ve got to separate the people from the army, sort of thing. This was hard to take. Like I didn’t like that part of it, I didn’t, of the people running the war, shall we say.
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