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Reception From the American Brass

Heroes Remember

Reception From the American Brass

We commandeered a train and most of us had learned to speak Japanese. I know I did. I could speak it quite fluently at the time. I can’t no more, I still understand it. We found it to our own benefit to learn the language. Then we’d know what to do when they told us what to do instead of getting kicked around until we did it. And we commandeered a train and we told them to hold the tracks open. It was electric. All electric trains there then and we high balled her for Tokyo. We were met by the Americans there. They locked all the doors on the train from the outside or they blocked them all and we all had to come out one door and there was a whole line of American generals and they grabbed each one of us and give us a big hug and then they loaded us up and took us to a big warehouse where they fed us. Well they run us through a... We took all of our clothes off and we walked through a place and we were showered and insecticide or whatever put on us. We were cleaned up anyway and then in to a big go-down to eat!

Mr. Lowe describes commandeering a train to Tokyo and a very warm reception from the American Brass upon their arrival.

Garfield Lowe

Garfield Lowe was born in Cobalt, Ontario, on May 6, 1919. His mother died shortly after his birth. His father was a mine manager, but moved to Rackham, Manitoba, and setup a blacksmith shop where Garfield learned the trade from his father. Mr. Lowe was on his own at age 15, and over the next six years did a variety of jobs, including trapping skunks for two dollars a pelt, farm labourer and sawmill worker. During this time he was married and had two children. At the age of 21, he enlisted with the Winnipeg Grenadiers. After completing basic training in Sherbrooke, Quebec, he performed internment camp duty in Kingston, Jamaica, where he received extensive machine gun training (no live fire), but no infantry tactics. In Mr. Lowe’s words, the Grenadiers were reinforced with “rejects” before leaving for Hong Kong. Mr. Lowe spent time in four different camps during his incarceration, and witnessed some horrifying events which haunt him to this day.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Garfield Lowe
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Hong Kong
Winnipeg Grenadiers
Machine Gunner

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