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Why He Enlisted

Heroes Remember

I really, truly say that I went over there to kill, to stop those Nazis. I had to stop that, that was going on in Europe. Because I could see, and this is before he overran in 1940, this is while he was still sitting there and beating the Poles in very short time. But, no, I knew, I was twenty-three, I wasn't just a kid and I had a good job and not only a good job, I would never have had to serve because I was in the merchant marine. And, no, I do know that a lot of people jumped off, well I know a lot even in my own regiment that jumped off a freight train straight in there for a buck a day. And something, three square meals, I know that. But me, personally, no. I went over there to stop Hitler, my little bit that I could do.

Mr. Keys explains his reason for enlisting.

Herman C. Keys

Mr. Keys was born on September 15, 1916. He grew up in Balcarres, Saskatchewan which is sixty miles east of Regina. Mr. Keys started school at the age of six and quit in grade ten, at which time he went to Ontario to find work. His father owned a hotel which he sold before Mr. Keys was born. He also owned two farms and later became a cattle buyer. He died when Mr. Keys was twelve. His mother came from England and was a housekeeper for his father. Mr. Keys had a brother, named Mel and a sister. Mel went into action with Mr. Keys in Dieppe. Mel was wounded but survived the war. Mr. Keys joined the South Saskatchewan Regiment as a rifleman and was a member of the merchant marine for three years prior to enlisting.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Herman C. Keys
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
South Saskatchewan Regiment

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