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Restoring Discipline at North Point Camp

Heroes Remember

Restoring Discipline at North Point Camp

Colonel Holmes of the Rifles was senior colonel and I think the officers decision was he would be the new brigadier and they handed down new orders. They got everything established. Mind you, let's put it this way, we were a bunch of rabble in that sense; unshaven, slovenly, well we have nothing to shave with but the Grenadiers and the Rifles put out orders that we were to become soldiers again. We were to become disciplined. We were to shave as best we could and keep ourselves clean. Now I would say what the Chinese, what the Japanese had done had got the Chinese to repair the water mains that come into camp but we had flush toilets and showers, cold showers, no hot water.

Mr. Atkinson describes his officers ordering the POW’s to become disciplined again, and to wash and shave as best they could, given the camp's modest plumbing.

Harold Atkinson

Harold Atkinson was born on February 14, 1922 in Selkirk, Manitoba. He had three siblings. His father, a First World War Veteran, died when he was nine. His family lived on relief, seven dollars a week, and he helped by delivering papers. He finished grade nine, and then in 1940 enlisted. Mr. Atkinson was eighteen when he joined the Winnipeg Grenadiers. He served in Jamaica, guarding German and Italian nationals at an internment camp. He returned to Canada and then went to Hong Kong with his unit. Mr. Atkinson fought against and was taken prisoner by the Japanese. As a prisoner, he heard several comrades bayoneted to death. Mr. Atkinson worked at Kai Tak airport and in North Point Camp's diphtheria ward. In Omini, Japan he worked as a stevedore at the shipyard. When the war ended, Mr. Atkinson was fortunate enough to be flown home.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Harold Atkinson
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Hong Kong
Winnipeg Grenadiers
Machine Gunner

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