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Parachutes to Pants

Heroes Remember

Clothing, they were wearing the same clothes day after day. And I found it funny, I used to go on foot patrol and I used to see a lot of people wearing the same colour, like all a drab, and I’d say “Well, are they in the military?” And then what it was I found out, what they used to do, this is human instinct, this is them taking over during hard times. What they used to do is go out to the drop zones, sometimes being fired at by the Serbs, steal American parachutes and make pants and shirts for them, for their kids. And everybody would be walking around Srebenica with these camouflage pants on and I thought that they were military uniforms but they were handmade by the women and this is how they clothed their kids and I’m going my goodness, gracious. To watch a food convoy come into town, they had to be, we had to meet it at the checkpoint, Serb checkpoint, to bring it in and it was chaos. It was chaos. You had, it was no slowing down, you had to just gun it all you can to get down the street because people would be throwing themselves out in front of the vehicle. I mean it was just chaos, I mean. Then from there it would be distributed by the UN people, mainly the Blue Cross, or the Red Cross people that were there with us. But it was just to look at that and see it was, my goodness.

Mr. Wiseman describes the level of survival the Bosnian people went to in order to clothe their children and obtain food in the town.

Robert Wiseman

Mr. Robert Wiseman was born October 9, 1953 in Bathurst, New Brunswick. With his father being a Veteran, and his five other brothers joining up, Mr. Wiseman made this the reason for joining the service. In 1974, fresh out of high school, Mr. Wiseman travelled to CFB Cornwallis Recruitment Camp receiving 11 weeks of training then to CFB Gagetown for advanced training as a combat soldier. Mr. Wiseman joined the army experiencing one tour to Cyprus and later in his career travelled to Bosnia holding the rank of Warrant Officer. His service in Bosnia provided humanitarian support to the Bosnian people after the Srebrenica massacre where many people were killed. After discharging from the army, Mr. Wiseman returned to Fredericton.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Robert Wiseman
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Warrant Officer

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