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Tied and Chained for 13 Months

The Dieppe Raid

Tied and Chained for 13 Months

We were tied for thirteen months. That was quite an ordeal. We had a bunch of extra guards and whatnot in the pillboxes and we had no idea what was happening. They lined us up in fours and the first bunch that went in, really I was in the next bunch...listening for shots, you know, not knowing what was going to happen with so many guards around. So the next bunch was called in and they just tied us up like that. We still wondered what they were going to do to us afterwards but at least we were still living. And then they had no orders to untie us so the first couple of days we slept like that and we would wake up at night and want to move your hand but couldn’t do it. We complained that they were using Red Cross string to tie us up whether that was true or not. Anyhow after they give us, well I guess you’d call it… but they were about this far apart. And we were thirteen months like that but you could play cards, you could do anything. It didn’t interfere that much. Near the end of the thirteen months during that time too, we got so that we could open them up with a bully tin. They were easy to open up and we would take them off. We’d get our chains put on and we would take them off and go around again and it was the same bunch going around and around and they would… anyhow, near the end the guards would come in on the table and then if an officer come in they’d come rushing through the barracks, “Put your chains on, put your chains on!” We’d put them back on!

Mr. Cole recalls that for a long time, prisoners were tied and chained within the camp.

Elmer Cole

Mr. Elmer Cole was born in Roche Percee, Saskatchewan on December 22, 1919. At age 15 he started working and left school with a grade eight education. In 1940 he joined with the South Saskatchewan Regiment taking basic training in Winnipeg and in Feb. 41 he came back to Brandon, Manitoba for mechanical training, switching over to The Calgary Tanks as a trooper on the Churchill tanks. Mr. Cole travelled overseas to England where he was given more training until the summer of ’42 when the Dieppe Raid occurred. Mr. Cole fought through the battle only to surrender with other Canadian soldiers where he became a POW until ’45 when they were set free. After returning to Canada, Mr. Cole worked with the Department of National Defence, then carried on as a mechanic but with the strong desire to always be a wheat farmer, he and his wife bought a farm in Oak bank, Manitoba until he retired at the young age of 54. Mr. Cole and wife Isabel adopted two boys. Now widowed, Mr. Cole spends much of his time playing cards and socializing with residents of his retirement home as well as spending time with his grandchildren. In 2005 Mr. Cole was presented with an Honorary Life Member certificate of the Kiwanis Club in his local community. Presently, at age 97, Mr. Coles continues to enjoy a relaxed and healthy lifestyle.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
July 29, 2017
Person Interviewed:
Elmer Cole
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Calgary Tanks

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

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