Veteran Stories:
Cy Carney

Army

  • Signalman Cy Carney, 21, taken at Kure Harbour, Japan, April 1953.

    Cy Carney
  • Cy Carney at a military signpost stating "You are under enemy observation past this point," Korea, 1952.

    Cy Carney
  • Cy Carney on wash day, Korea, 1952.

    Cy Carney
  • Royal Canadian Corps of Signals shoulder flash (top), 25th Canadian Infantry Brigade shoulder flash (left), 1st Commonwealth Division shoulder flash (right), Royal Canadian Signals cap badge (bottom).

    Cy Carney
  • Cy Carney's medals, from left to right: Korean Service Medal, Canadian Volunteer Service Medal (Korea), Special Service Medal (NATO bar), Canadian Peacekeeping Medal, United Nations Korea Medal, United Nations Service (Cyprus) Medal, Canadian Forces Decoration with bar denoting 22 years of service and oak leaf cluster for Brave Conduct.

    Cy Carney
  • Cy Carney received the Queen's Order for Brave Conduct 3 March 1956 for saving the life of a young boy while he was stationed in Whitehorse, Yukon.

    Cy Carney
Enlarge Image
Listen to this story

"I can recall one experience when we were traveling in a jeep, laying line, of course raising a bit of dust. They observed us, and started firing at us. Of course, we turned around, and the jeep really moved fast that day."

Transcript

My name is Cy Carney. I live in a small community near Minto, New Brunswick. I served 25 years in the Canadian Armed Forces, Army Section. I served also with NATO forces in Europe - a tour of duty in Cyprus, the UN Forces there. And I'm a veteran of the Korean War. I was there April 1952 to May 1953.

I enlisted in the army in 1950. I joined the Royal Canadian Corps of Signals, and I completed a communications lineman's course in fall of 1950 in Kingston, Ontario. In March 1952, I was posted to 1 [1st Battalion] RCHA, which is Royal Canadian Horse Artillery. I was attached to them in the signals troupe. And we were stationed in Shilo, Manitoba, for a period of time. Took some training there for Korea. And then in mid-April, 1952, we left Shilo as a regiment, and we disembarked for Seattle, Washington, for a one year tour of duty in Korea.

As a lineman, we were responsible for communications within the regiment toward headquarters, and also to forward positions on the front line. And these forward positions were called FOP - we were forward observation posts. There were two people in these posts. If any movement was observed, the infantry commander at the time, if he needed support - gun support - he would call back the map coordinates to the artillery regiment, and they would fire a barrage of 25 pound shells.

There were many mine fields in Korea also, and most of them were discovered and marked by the engineers. Of course, there were always a few that didn't get marked, and there was always a danger of... as a lineman, we would go cross-country with the wire, and always concerned about these, but I was very fortunate not to encounter any. But some nights, we would hear mine explosions set off by small animals.

There's a road in the valley, what they called the "Bowling Alley," that was leading to Hill 355. During this time, we were under observation from the enemy. I can recall one experience when we were traveling in a jeep, laying line, of course raising a bit of dust. They observed us, and started firing at us. Of course, we turned around, and the jeep really moved fast that day.

"April 24th. It got foggy this morning, and the whistle blowing, of course. Hardly a ripple, just very calm and gliding along very smoothly. Had a great feed in the afternoon. The guy in charge of stores where we work every day gave us lots of ice-cream and cookies. We pigged out on that, and it was quite a treat for us."

"April 27th. We sighted land at last, the coast of Japan. A welcome sight after a rough voyage. The harbour is an interesting, busy place with ships of all descriptions."

"May 1st, '52. I arrived in Pusan Korea at seven o'clock in the morning. We had a layover there for a couple of days while American troops disembarked. And from there we went on the same ship to Inchon. I got sailed to Inchon 6am this morning."

As I say, it was quite an experience. I was so fortunate to have my mother save this letter - it brings back a lot of memories.

 

Follow us