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A Very Sad Picture

Heroes Remember

My group was about thirty two people. And I don’t know why I became in charge of that particular draft that was sent to Korea. We left Val Cartier after all you know, getting equipped and so on and the shots and travelled to Edmonton where we had a reshooting exercise because somehow in the documents something was wrong so we had to restart the whole process and then flew to Vancouver from where we would fly to Tokyo. The one thing that struck us when we arrived in Korea was the desolation. We didn’t see too much of it but we saw some of it. In what we call the pipe line going to the front line we were also in military posts, establishments and so on. We didn’t see too much around but as we travelled from one place to another we could see… At that time the Korean people or the Korean peninsula had suffered, you know, up and down, up and down. That’s two up and downs and some places had been hit four times by the war. So you can imagine that some places were in rumbles. And the population even worse. The population was a question of extreme survival. It was a very, very sad picture.

Upon arrival in Korea, Mr. Charland describes the terrain and sights of a country in despair.

Claude Charland

Mr. Claude Charland was born February 27, 1929 in Montreal, Quebec. As an only child and born during the Great Depression, Mr. Charland was placed in a boarding school in hopes of experiencing a better life. After obtaining a high level of education, he made the choice to join the military. In 1948, he took part in the Canadian Officer Training Corp and underwent infantry training in Camp Borden followed by additional training in Val Cartier. In 1950 the Korean War started and Mr. Charland became an instructor for francophone officer recruits. In 1951, joining as a callout, Mr. Charland chose to be part of the Korean War. He joined with the 3rd Battalion, Royal 22nd Regiment and upon retirement held rank of Lieutenant. Mr. Charland holds great pride for his service during Korean War. In 2018 during the Korean Olympics, Mr. Charland had the great honour and privilege to be the torch bearer as part of Team Canada and carried the torch 100 metres through the rink grounds where he had served and played hockey many years before. Mr. Charland retired from the military in 1982 and remains very active in his community.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
May 23, 2018
Person Interviewed:
Claude Charland
War, Conflict or Mission:
Korean War
Royal 22e Régiment
Infantry Officer

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