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First Attack With the Infantry

Heroes Remember

First Attack With the Infantry

The first time I went on an attack with the infantry, I had the same problem. I mean, I'd been in the butts in Canada, like, where, you know what the butts are? It's like where the targets are and you're on a firing range, you know, firing rifles and machine guns. You raise the target up and you lower the target and you patch it up after the people have shot, you know, and you, you set it again. And so you hear the, the, the, you know, the sound of the rifles and machine guns is like firecrackers, you know. You don't hear the report like you'd hear an ordinary rifle or machine gun. It's like a firecracker. Well, then when I, the first time I went in on an attack with the infantry, we were in the middle of the night, we were walking up this creek bank, actually, and we had to walk about six or seven miles, I think, to the start line, and, so, we were walking up and this machine gun opened up, and this was about four o' clock in the morning, you know, start time was five. And so I got a Bren gun over my shoulder and what not, and I wasn't live signaller then, I was protecting our signaller and captain. I always took the other guy and the crew to go up, not always but a lot of the time, we had to provide our own defence, you know. So I'm walking along the road with this infantry man in front of me and Sergeant and this machine gun opens up, and I dive for the river bank, you know, and he grabs me by the shoulder and hauls me out, you know, and he says, he says, "Dick," he says, "they're not firing at us!" You know? And I said, "Oh, thank God for that!" You know, phew! Thank God for that! So we start walking again. Now a machine gun opened again and he dives for the river bank. I thought, "Well, I better dive too," you see? But yeah, they were shooting at us, you know. Or at least they were shooting in our direction. That kind of thing.

Mr. Field talks about his first attack with his infantry, and the sensation of being machine gunned.

Richard (Dick) Field

Mr. Richard Field was born in Toronto, Ontario, on November 11, 1924, where his father was an accountant for Brazilian Traction Light and Car Power Company located in Toronto. After hearing stories from his grandfather and friends about the service, Mr. Field and his father enlisted in 1943. Serving as a Gunner in the Royal Canadian Artillery, Mr. Field went to the continent after the summer of 1944, and landed at Dieppe. Having witnessed battles such as the Battle of the Bulge, which was, on record, the coldest battle fought during the Second World War, encounters with German POWS and the German SS, nothing stirs up memories such as the moving story about the Highland Light Infantry returning from battle, wearily marching on to battle, serenaded by the haunting melody of the bagpipes. Mr. Field returned home to Toronto and married his high school sweetheart, however, the war never left the dreams and thoughts of Mr. Field, who still, quite frequently, is plagued by dreams and nightmares of life on the front.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Richard (Dick) Field
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Northwest Europe

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