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Close Calls in Italy

Heroes Remember

Close Calls in Italy

There was patrol going, sent on both sides all winter long. As a matter of fact, I was with the RAP and Dr. Burks, it was Dr. Burks was our doctor at the time. We had a, we had a soldier that had trotted on a mine. He had his two legs blown off and one arm and the other one was hurt too. We had to go and pick him up at the front. So, we went pick him up and Dr. Burks gave him blood, he was evacuated and he survived. He came home in a basket though, because no legs, one arm. I remember that. That was at the static front there, static front. There was a few casualties, yes, but there's always casualties because of the artillery you know, the 88. Well, we called the German artillery the 88 and they used to fire quite a lot every day. I was doing guard duty at the, at the RAP one night you know. That was behind the line. We hear the 88 shoot and we hear the bombs just coming near us, just fell about 20 feet from us, but didn't explode. It was a dud. I was full of dirt. But you see, this is something, you know, you don't forget because if it hadn't been a dud I would be dead, so close.

Mr. Clavel describes the mutilation a land mine can cause, and his good fortune of a shell landing close to him and not exploding.

Roger Clavel

Roger Clavel was born in Sainte-Scholastique, Quebec on February 15, 1919. He was the sixth of eight children. After finishing grade eight, he sold donuts door-to-door. Mr. Clavel enlisted three days after the war started, on September 13, 1939. He went overseas as a Fusilier de Montreal, and while in England he was married. Mr. Clavel then joined the Royal 22nd Regiment in North Africa. During the Italian campaign, Mr. Clavel eventually ended up driving a medical supply truck. The Royal 22nd Regiment then rejoined the Canadian army in Belgium, but Mr. Clavel saw limited action. After returning to Canada, Mr. Clavel had to wait exactly one year for the arrival of his war bride.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Roger Clavel
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Royal 22e Régiment
Truck driver

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