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Connection to the “Wait for me Daddy!” poster

Heroes Remember

Connection to the “Wait for me Daddy!” poster

We had trained in New Westminster and we had barracks there and we knew we were going over to spend the winter camp at Nanaimo and, of course, they weren’t divulging that, they said we were boarding for overseas. Anyway, I am in that column about half way up and I could see this happening because it’s on a slope there and you could look over the top and the guys ahead of you in the parade, parade down the street, each street in New Westminster and I saw this happening but I didn’t know who it was and when I got closer I recognized Bernice because they just live here in Summerland, sorry I’m not in Summerland today am I? And the little boy Warren, was his name, everybody called him “Whitey” and that of course, the photo became the most famous picture and I have kept in touch although they eventually moved to Vancouver Island while I stayed in Summerland. But we kept in touch, he was a nice guy. He, of course, was used extensively in selling war bonds and he was interviewed and filmed and making statements like “Buy war bonds and help my daddy come home!” Interviewer: And you had mentioned that, that photo “Wait for me Daddy,” it was credited as one of the most famous Canadian photos of time. Yes it was. It was used extensively. The schools in Canada had that posted up on the wall and it was really marvellous. I never thought that would happen for somebody from Summerland. Here’s the other part that’s hard. The war, the picture is about the separation of families. That is what war does. And family has casualties too in many cases. It happened with their family. Jack and his wife got divorced, Bernice, and the boy was left to… It’s one of those sad things of war.

Known as one of the most famous photos during that time, Mr. Bernhardt shares his personal connection with the family portrayed in the poster and shares its’ meaning.

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

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

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