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This is My Regiment

Heroes Remember

I moved down to Sorrel, got kicked out of there, couldn’t get a ride. Come back to Toronto because I knew people here and I figured well I’ll find some way, I can’t get overseas. They wouldn’t let you over anymore; the war was getting too close. So I transferred to this regiment, The Royal Regiment. And I looked around Toronto, different armouries, the old armouries on University armouries was there then. I looked around different regiments and I looked at the 48 but then, you know, I was only nineteen years old and I was only about one hundred twenty five pounds, I was only a skinny little fellow. I went in there and I didn’t look too good in a dress, my little knobby knees and that so I said that’s no good for me. I looked around here and I found the Royals and I said, uh oh, wearing the big bear skins and the scarlet uniforms which I liked. Now I could look tall, do better with the girls. Girls liked the big bear skins so this is my regiment. So I have been here ever since. I joined this regiment the end of June I think it was, ’39 and then when the war broke out I enlisted to go overseas and I have been with t his regiment ever since. As I said, that was my starting with the Royals in my escapades.

Mr. Ryan describes his reasoning for joining the Royal Canadian Regiment.

Joseph Anthony Ryan

Joseph Anthony Ryan was born in Montreal in 1920. The circumstances during the depression era saw him and his family moving to Thunder Bay, Ontario in search of a better life. Like many during this time, applying to Canada’s military was a way to find work, adventure and purpose, so in the late 30’s he joined the Lake Superior Regiment and began his training alongside the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry and Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadians). From participating in operations from Iceland to Dieppe to his time as a prisoner of war in Germany, Joseph Ryan’s stories bring us a unique perspective on the price paid for our freedom.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
May 5, 2009
Person Interviewed:
Joseph Anthony Ryan
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Royal Regiment of Canada

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