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“Vigil” - The Canadian Story

Heroes Remember

“Vigil” - The Canadian Story

Well what had happened, the Black Watch learned we were all part of the same Commonwealth division. They learned that their comrades, the Canadians had finished their tour of duty and they were going back to Canada so they got permission for the bandsman within the unit to collect their pipes and drums and about fifteen of them formed up and walked down and they came right down to where we were and marched back and forth below us and we are all sitting in our snow holes watching these guys. We didn’t speak to them and they didn’t speak to us. They just played back and forth. It was a parting salute and then they disappeared into the night. And weeks later we went through the inoculations and inspections whatnot and they put us on a couple of commandeered fishing boats from the South Koreans, took us across to Kiuri, Japan. That was now a big British naval base and we stayed there for about ten or twelve days and then finally on board the ship and came back. It took 23 days to cross the Pacific, got on the trains and home. I did a painting called, “Vigil”, and it’s just a painting at night. A fellow in the trench. He’s by himself, of course, and he’s looking out into the darkness. He’s blowing on his hand because it’s bloody cold. The winters there were like they are here, you know. And his mind, you can see in his eyes, the painting worked. He’s a million miles away. And it’s called “Vigil” simply because he elected to be there, wished to hell he hadn’t but he will see it through. That was the Canadian story.

In describing his painting, Mr. Zuber tells of his return home from the Pacific and the inspiration he had for the painting he named “Vigil.”

Edward "Ted" Zuber

Mr. Edward “Ted” Zuber was born October 16, 1932 in Montreal, Quebec. As a child, he was born with the gift of painting. Although not enthralled with school, Mr. Zuber did graduate and then went on to Queens University (Fine Arts). When the Korean War broke out in 1950, he was adamant to enlist and serve his country. He became a parachutist with the 1st Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment. Arriving in Korea in 1952, he took on the role of sniper spending much of his time on the front lines. During this time, Mr. Zuber produced many drawings and, upon returning to Canada, presented thirteen of his canvas collections to the Canadian War Museum. Presently known as the unofficial war artist for Korea, Mr. Zuber’s paintings have become very popular. His painting “Freeze” has been unveiled in honour of the 65th Anniversary of the Korean War. Mr. Zuber has great pride in his service during the Korean War and is honoured to have been recognized for his artwork. Present day, Mr. Zuber finds himself in his studio continuing to paint the images of his wartime experiences, images that never seem to go away. Mr. Zuber resides in Kingston, Ontario with his wife and family.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
May 23, 2018
Person Interviewed:
Edward "Ted" Zuber
War, Conflict or Mission:
Korean War
Royal Canadian Regiment

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