German Tears Over a Cheap Watch

Heroes Remember

German Tears Over a Cheap Watch

One night we hooked onto a place, it was quite a hard place to fight so that night we went into it and we got a hold of this and we captured a bunch of Germans there and it was one fellow there I got a hold of and I took his watch out. He had one of them little watches about that big, a dollar watch, and I took that away from him and he cried and I said, “Man, you're some glad that you, all you would lose was that one little watch, all that you would lose.” I said you some glad. Well he looked at me so funny, he says, “I guess you're right!” Because there was a dozen of them around him and the only thing that was holding him from me was that I took something from him and I was keeping him from the other fellows.

Mr. McLeod describes taking a number of German prisoners during an advance. He takes a cheap watch from a prisoner, who cries over the loss. Mr. McLeod reminds the captive that the outcome for him could have been far worse.

Russell McLeod

Russell McLeod was born on October 9, 1899 in Liverpool, Nova Scotia. His father was a fisherman, and prior to his enlistment, they fished together. Mr. McLeod joined the 219th Battalion in 1916 and trained at Camp Aldershot, Nova Scotia. He was sent overseas that fall, and joined the 25th Battalion in France. He served during Canada's 'Last Hundred Days', seeing action at the Hindenburg Line, Cambrai and Mons. After the armistice, he served as a member of the Occupation Army in Germany.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Russell McLeod
War, Conflict or Mission:
First World War

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