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The Italian Campaign Begins At Sicily

Heroes Remember

The Italian Campaign Begins At Sicily

We started heading out. We didn't know where we were going, mind you, when it finally took off, but we got into a huge convoy. And we started going and we got into where it was warmer, warmer, and it was finally when we were outside the Mediterranean somewhere where they told us where we were going to go, to Sicily. But prior to that, there was a huge convoy and a lot of the ships were flying the black flag, for submarines cause there was a ship or two that got hit with our guys in it, we lost all out transport there, as a matter of fact. But they picked the crews up and put them in a prison camp in North Africa until the landing was to take place. But I'll never forget the Corvettes. The storms were bad in there and these little Corvettes, you'd se them for one moment, and the one moment they were up on the high wave and you could see the prop just a spinning, and then down it would go. It'd take quite a while before it could come up again. But these little ships got in the circle in this one area and they were throwing depth charges. And in this one area, all at once this thing like a cigar came out of the water way up and then down a little. And I was standing on the bow there watching and it blew and it was on fire and it went down, it was gone. It was a submarine, German submarine they got. It was amazing to see that happen.

Mr. Lenko and "D" Company, now in Scotland, leave Glasgow harbour on their way to take part in the Sicily landing. He recalls stormy seas and one encounter with a German submarine along the way.

Sam Lenko

Mr. Lenko enlisted in the army in Edmonton of February 14, 1940. He took basic infantry training in Calgary and then travelled to Halifax by train where he boarded the Duchess of Bedford, where he sailed in convoy to England. The ship arrived in the port of Liverpool and he was sent immediately to Aldershot for further training.His service included Sicily, Italy, France, Belgium and Holland. He returned to Canada and to Calgary on August 29, 1945, eventually training as a barber. He ran a barber shop for 20 years before changing his job to an unspecified occupation. He spent his working civilian life in Sangudo, Alberta.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Sam Lenko
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Loyal Edmonton Regiment / D Company / 17th Platoon

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