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One of the Funniest Things

Heroes Remember

One of the Funniest Things

Eggs... we had eggs. Powdered eggs you know, and they were terrible.We were in Gadera and I said to Ilio — this young lad that I had taken with me — and I said, “There’s lots of farmers around here, eh Ilio?” And he said, “Yeah.” He was speaking a little ... pretty good English by then. I said, “Do you think they got any eggs?” He said, “I’ll go and find out.” He comes back he says, “Yeah. What will you trade them for them?” I said, “What do they want?” “They said they want flour or salt.” I said, “Okay,” I said, “ Tell them to come tomorrow morning.” I went — Johnny Harper was the cook — and I said, “Tell them to come tomorrow morning and we’ll barter ... we’ll you know.” We got up in the morning. Johnny Harper is yelling at me. I’m up ... way up top. “Get down here you S.O.B.” and I said, “What’s the matter?” I go down and there was a line up, I’m telling you it must have been 2 miles long. Two miles long. And I said, “Ilio where are you?” He said. “I’m right here.” Ok the first one came in and they had ... they had 2 or 3 eggs and I said what do they want now. A cup of sugar ... or salt and flour for the number of eggs that they had. Well, we had 3500 eggs — fresh eggs by 4 o’clock in the afternoon. We said we can’t take anymore. Johnny Harper threw up his hands. He said, “I’m not cooking any for anybody. You want ‘em, you do ‘em yourself.” Well, we made all these little stoves with gas and sand and water. And you open them up and the little drip of gas and water at the same time and you light it in the bottom of a shell casing you know. Kept you warm. Well we had boiled eggs. We had fried eggs. We had scrambled eggs. I’m telling you that was funny. That’s one of the funniest things ...that’s one of the funniest things.

Mr. Quick tells an amusing story about bartering for eggs with local Italian farmers.

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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