Veteran Stories:
Louise Johnson

  • Defence Industries Limited employee Edna Poirier presents The Honourable C.D. Howe the 100,000,000th projectile manufactured at the Cherrier plant, located at Saint-Paul-L'Ermite (today known as Le Gardeur), Quebec, September 1944.

    Jack Long / National Film Board of Canada. Photothèque / Library and Archives Canada / PA-112908 Restrictions on use: Nil Copyright: Expired
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"People that I knew, people, as I say, friends I went to school with, several of the boys, lost their lives that I personally knew."

Transcript

I was working at the city hospital. And at that time, 1938, 1939, things were getting desperate for, they were calling up everybody and my friends were all going to war. I didn't really feel inclined to do that somehow, but an opportunity came to help when the men from the Defence Industries Limited showed up in Saskatoon [Saskatchewan] to – were recruiting female, single, female women.

We had our own – Defence Industries Limited had their own magazine called The Commando. And, there were things in there that we, you know, knew about. So [the magazine] and the radio, the radio kept us fairly well informed as to what was going on overseas. D-Day and all of that. Our people were overseas, our brothers, our sisters, our husbands, so certainly we followed as best we could. We worried about them all. The boys I went to school with – it was a very, very hard time.

I had an uncle, Clifford Campbell, he lived in Saskatchewan, of course. And he was in the Militia. One of my jobs was to polish his buttons, all his brass buttons, and polish his shoes and everything, so that he could go off and do his training at Dundurn, in Saskatchewan. Before really war was declared, they were calling up the men who were already trained, had some training. And my uncle was called up very early. And he was overseas. He fought in Italy up and down the coast almost all of that time. People that I knew, people, as I say, friends I went to school with, several of the boys, lost their lives that I personally knew. Not Uncle Cliff, he came home safely.

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