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“Why I joined up”

Heroes Remember

“Why I joined up”

There was no money around. If you had twenty five cents you were, you were rich if you had a quarter. It was very, very scarce, money was very scarce. I think if they worked on a farm, anybody that worked it was fifty cents a day and they were lucky if they got fifty cents a day. In 1939 when England declared war, they were paying a dollar, I think it was $1.30 a day for to go into the army so $1.30 a day was a lot of money! You were rich if you had $1.30 a day, so pretty near all young people joined pretty well right away.

Mr Durant recalls that higher pay led many young people to join the army when the war broke out in 1939.

Gordon Durant

Gordon Durant was born on December 20thth 1921. Things were busy for him and his 7 sisters and 4 brothers growing up on the farm in Saskatchewan. His father lived most of his civilian life with a disabling injury from the First World War. Mr. Durant left school after grade eight to help out around the farm before joining the army at age 17. After completing basic training, he was sent to Jamaica for garrison duty and then to Hong Kong where he was captured by the Japanese. He spent the remainder of the war as a prisoner of war in Hong Kong and Japan where he worked in the mines and on the railroad.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Gordon Durant
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War

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