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Canned Bacon!

Heroes Remember

Food was horrible, and I mean horrible. That's why today I will not eat lamb or mutton, no way, because we lived on that all the day, and mutton stew, day after, day after day. It came from New Zealand, I presume, or Australia, I presume, or England or Scotland because they had lots of sheep there that well, we had . . . some regiments had better cooks than others. And they did the best they could with what they had. Food-wise, breakfast was bacon. You always got bacon in the morning and porridge and sometimes, very, very rarely did you get bread, but you got biscuits, hard biscuits. But the bacon was beyond bacon. It came in cans about the same as a 48 ounce juice can. And it was rolled all up, and they would take the top and the bottom out of the can, the cook would. And they'd push the roll of bacon out. And it was all wrapped in wax paper, and it would roll out as yards and yards of bacon. It was sliced, but it was nearly always fat, nothing but . . . but you had lots of fat. This is why most of us all developed jaundice, in those days they called it, hepatitis. I, I, I developed jaundice when there in Italy and was sent to hospital. We spent for a month, I. . . . they . . . all they gave us to eat in those days was white meat and chicken, dry bread, black tea, no, no fats whatsoever. And we were sent after a month in a Canadian hospital, we were sent back to a British hospital for convalescence. And our first meal there was mutton stew and each one of us was violently ill again. We had to start all over the treatment. I can remember that. And after we were there, we finally developed . . . I, I got out of it, out of that sickness spell. And our training was, we had to climb part-way up Mount Vesuvius in Italy and when we could get to a certain point, then we were considered cured, and we could go back to our unit, or to our own unit, or whatever it was.

Mr. Carr describes poor food, the illness that often resulted and an odd way of ensuring you were cured

Robert Carr

Mr. Carr was born October 17, 1918, in Oyster Bed Bridge, Prince Edward Island, and grew up on his family's farm. He was the oldest of six children, and one of two brothers old enough to serve in the Second World War. Mr. Carr enlisted in the army as a member of the 1st C Battery, Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, a Manitoba regiment. Once reaching England, he joined the 1st Canadian Medium Regiment as a surveyor. Mr. Carr took part in the Italian campaign and later joined the Allied Forces in Northern Europe for the liberation effort in Holland. After returning to Canada, Mr. Carr surveyed, farmed and finally served many years with the Canadian Postal service. He and his wife, Mildred, currently reside in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Robert Carr
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Mount Cassino and Ortona
1st Canadian Medium Regiment
Staff Sergeant

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