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Returning to Dieppe

Heroes Remember

Well I am very keen to go back to Dieppe. When I was, when my battalion initially went to Germany in 1962 we sent a delegation, a one hundred man guard of honour to participate in the 20th anniversary celebration so although I was only two years old at the time of the raid, I am a Veteran of the 20th anniversary commemoration. So I am looking forward to going back and seeing the old sights. The raid was not a resounding success, I think, as everyone realizes. Some may even say that it wasn’t very well planned but I think the big thing that I took away from it in 1962 was the appreciation of the local people for the effort that we had made. The way that they minded the grave sites and erected little monuments around the town and that sort of thing. And then in the way that they welcome us when we go back. I think any Canadian is always welcome in these sites because those people realize that the large sacrifice we made was on their behalf. And I think they also appreciate that the planning took into consideration minimizing local casualties, that sort of thing. So that’s the highlight for me is meeting the people and seeing the enthusiasm. When I was there in 1962 we were marching through the old town down the cobblestone street and there were crowds and people up in the 2nd storey windows and balconies and things and I was really concerned because they started throwing things at us and things were hitting us and it took me a bit aback until I realized that they were flowers. They were whole roses and basically the street in front of us was littered with these flower petals. So that’s a memory that sticks with me, I guess.

Mr. Kelly expresses his pride for being part of the delegation for the 70th Anniversary of the Dieppe Raid and how pleased he is to have the chance to go back.

Michael Kelly

Mr. Michael Kelly was born January 1940 in Sudbury, Ontario. Being active in the Cadet Program as a youngster, Mr. Kelly always held the idea that he would pursue a career in the military. Once of age, Mr. Kelly joined the Officer Candidate Plan School of Infantry at Camp Borden. Graduating as an officer, he accepted deployments overseas including Germany and Cyprus. Upon retirement from the army, Mr. Kelly held rank of major. After military service, he became quite involved in many organizations and worked with UNICEF and World Food Program in East Timor. Mr. Kelly has great pride in his membership with The Black Watch Regiment and is presently the president of the Upper Canada Branch of the Black Watch Association in Ottawa. He now resides in Ottawa with his wife Erica.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
August 2, 2017
Person Interviewed:
Michael Kelly
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces

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