Language selection


Cyprus: "The Corporals War"

Heroes Remember

Cyprus: "The Corporals War"

So we were, we were briefed on the situation as much as it was felt that the officers needed to tell the corporals and the privates and whatever, but having said that, the battalions in Cyprus, this was called the Corporals War, because at that time sections were commanded by corporals, until Mr. Hellier came along and changed the integration/unification of forces and decided that corporal would be the basic rank that means everybody came down a peg and the same with the officer corps. But at the, Cyprus it was called the Corporal's War because most of the observation posts, the OP's were section sized, which meant the corporal was there. So you had the three section corporals out there in their OP's, platoon sergeant and the platoon commander would be at platoon headquarters, and would run out with rations or whatever and so forth. So they had to use a lot of common sense and exercise a lot of leadership when it's hot there's sand flies around, the re-supply run hasn't come up, you're running out of water or there's some hostile action from the Greek Cypriots or the Turk Cypriots.

Mr.Ethell talks about the briefings and preparations before deploying to Cyprus and he describes how Cyprus was dubbed the "Corporals War".

Donald Stewart Ethell

Donald Stewart Ethell was born in July 1937 and was raised in Victoria, BC. His father was a Veteran of both the First and Second World Wars. His mother was a nurse. He and his sister attended boarding school because of his parents' jobs and he was only home at Christmas and during the summer. His mother passed away when Mr. Ethell was 10 years old.

When he enlisted, Mr. Ethell joined the Queen's Own Rifles in Calgary. After several years of serving as an infantryman he was recommended for the officer training. Mr. Ethell graduated from the program and rose to the rank of Colonel. He went on to command Canadian, and United Nations, forces in various missions all over the world. In the mid 1990s, Col. Ethell retired with over thirty-five years of distinguished service.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Donald Stewart Ethell
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Queen's Own Rifles of Canada

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

Related Videos

Date modified: