Photo of Clyde Bougie taken in Petawawa with 6th Division, by a Tank on a Sunday during leisure time, June 1945.Clyde R. Bougie
Clyde Bougie standing with his father when on embarcation leave before leaving for Hong Kong.Clyde R. Bougie
Clyde Bougie's Discharge Certificate, 1944-1974, which certified his release from the Armed Forces.Clyde R. Bougie
Clyde Bougie's service medals.Clyde R. Bougie
Hat Badge of Royal Canadian Infantry Corps worn by Trainees of 6th Division, 1944-45Clyde R. Bougie
"But when I fire my ten rounds, Sergeant said, he used to say, “I think you’re cheating.” When they brought the target up, they seen it was just a small one inch hole, all the bullets were going into the same hole."
And then they were asking for volunteers to go out into the 6th Division under General John M. Rockingham, where he was a brigadier at the time. He had the 6th Division training with an American Captain and two top Sergeants. We had been fighting in Burma, giving us jungle training and unarmed combat, and I qualified on the ranges as a sharpshooter and was put in the sniper platoon.
We were ready to go to Hong Kong to take our Canadian prisoners of war out, and we were on embarkation leave. I went out onto the Wanapitei Lake fishing, I went down there to my aunt’s place and the boys and me went to Wanapitei Lake fishing and I had a battery radio with me and was listening to the music and announcements and they announced that the war in Japan was over, just dropped the A bomb on Nagasaki and Hiroshima, and that all troops were to report back to Petawawa [Ontario].
I rode back to my aunt’s house and told her about it and waited until my uncle came in from the lumber camp and told him. I had to go into Sudbury [Ontario] and go back to camp. And he said, no, it’s no good, all the soldiers are being drunk and they put them in jail or there was a lot of trouble in Sudbury. So he said I had to wait before I left. Went back to Petawawa and everything was locked up there. And I just had to wait around until I got my repatriation, which I repatriated to Simcoe camp [Ontario].
We were quite hyped up and all gung-ho in the Second World War. Everybody was, the morale was quite high and we were really anticipated going there, and getting into the fray. But that never actually, after all that training and everything going, learning unarmed combat and what the American call silent killing, you know, being able to sneak up on the enemy and getting him in the dark and all this sort of thing. Well, we had a lot of the training into how the Japanese would make a long twine, on the end of a long twine, a great big bundle of sharpened bamboo, the sticks that were sticking all over the place. And they’d cut the string and let the fly out, fly down at you and impale you with it in the jungle. They used to do things like that and they used to put bamboo sticks at a 45 degree angle in the ground, sharpened on the end, and if you happened to be crawling along, you might get a bamboo stuck in your chest. And all kind of things, we had all this kind of training. It was quite intensive.
Well, you go on the ranges, they give you so many rounds of ammunition and put you on a 100 yard range and you fire at the target. And some fellows wouldn’t even hit the target. But when I was a kid, I had a Winchester 22 [caliber] rifle and I used to go out shooting rabbits and squirrels and partridge, and the odd time I’d get a deer. Yeah, I was quite adept with a rifle. But when I fire my ten rounds, Sergeant said, he used to say, “I think you’re cheating.” When they brought the target up, they seen it was just a small one inch hole, all the bullets were going into the same hole. Because I was such a good shot, they were all going in the same hole. (laughs) So they gave me another ten rounds and I’d shoot it again and they just said my rifle was sort off to the left, at the bottom of the black circle. So they adjusted the rifle for me and I fired again and here I was getting them right in the middle in the same circle, one circle.