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Two Ships Were Hit

Heroes Remember

We sailed for Italy in I think it was October 43... September... October. We landed in Naples in the convoy. A day and a half out of Naples, we were dived bombed. Two ships were hit but we weren’t. Georgie Game and I were on the USS Thurston. We photographed it all happening. We got under the gun turret so the shrapnel wouldn’t come down and hit us. Unfortunately we were not allowed to keep the film – we had to turn it over to the captain of the ship – American. We never saw it. Anyway we landed in Naples and I can always remember I saw this figure. There’s a big statue in Naples ... it’s some guy on a horse or something And I saw this figure way up there you know and I said, “Georgie that looks like a camera man up there. He said, “Yeah it does.” And it was. It was George Cooper. He was photographing the ship coming in, see. So we stayed over night in Naples that night and then we went ... we got into the vehicles. Then we went to Campobasso where the unit was at that time. That’s where we reported it, which is just up ... it’s part of Reggio di Calabria but it started to get a little richer. But on the way up there I said that my big... the first shock that I ever saw was we were driving along and I saw two bodies on the road ... German... no heads. So, that’s kind of a shaker you know. Shakes you up a little bit. But geez, we carried on. We got into Campobasso.

Mr. Quick describes going to Italy in a convoy, being dive bombed, and seeing his first dead soldiers near their camp in Campobasso.

Norman Quick

Mr. Quick was born in Toronto, Ontario on April 22, 1921. His father, a cinematographer, moved the family to Ottawa when he was very young and he remembers in particular, playing a lot of hockey wearing homemade equipment. Mr. Quick enlisted in the Medical Corps, but quickly transferred to the Film and Photo Corps once it was formed in England. His active service took him to Italy, where he filmed such notable actions as Ortona and Monte Cassino. Interestingly, he and his crew adopted a teenage boy named Ilio, who accompanied the Canadian film crew until its tour in Italy ended. Mr. Quick was then deployed to NW Europe, where he served in France, Belgium, Holland and Germany. He remained in the Canadian Army as a cinematographer, but left after Paul Hellyer amalgamated Canada’s Armed Forces. Mr. Quick currently resides in Ottawa, Ontario.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Norman Quick
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Film and Photo Unit
Staff Sergeant
Film Camera Operator

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