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No Allowance for Ear Plugs

Heroes Remember

No Allowance for Ear Plugs

To my mental comfort, I’ll put it that way, for me to accept what is going on. You go where you are supposed to go, you do what you are supposed to do and whatever happens, it happens and you can’t do a thing about it. Luckily I didn’t have any personal injury except losing my hearing because being the a gun loader and at that time I went into a tank after driving the brigadier and my head was the closest to that end what we call the firefly which has the seventeen pounder got in to which they used to and try to knock out a tank because the other tank, three tanks in a troop at 75 millimetre which is a lighter gun and so the crews were issued rubber ear plugs but they wouldn’t issue, they told me I couldn’t have a set for my ears because I had to listen to the radio and they didn’t want, you know, a misunderstanding in that process and so I put that down to losing my, I don’t know if probably ear plugs would have saved my hearing but I feel that’s how it happened.

Mr. Bernhardt tells about the result of hearing loss caused by the inability to wear protective ear plugs due to his daily responsibilities as a wireless operator.

Charles Bernhardt

Mr. Charles Bernhardt was born March 13, 1921 in Yugoslavia. His father, a bricklayer, was from Hungary and came to Canada in 1927. The family followed the next year. Unable to recall too much of his childhood, Mr. Bernhardt does remember his happiness as a Canadian and that he always had the desire and pride to serve in the Canadian military. He chose to join the Canadian Armoured Division and served during in the Second World War in Normandy during the Battle of D-Day. He held the occupation of Brigadier General’s driver, a role he felt great pride in doing. Mr. Bernhardt is known for his participation in one of the most famous photos of all time which went for poster print, the “Wait for Me Daddy” poster which can be found displayed across Canada. In recognition of his service, Mr. Bernhardt received the Legion of Honour medal and was given the opportunity to be a part of the Canadian delegation for 100th Anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge - a memory of honour he will hold for a lifetime. Mr. Bernhardt resides in Summerland, B.C.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
April 4, 2017
Person Interviewed:
Charles Bernhardt
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Armoured Regiment

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