Sunday, February 16, 2014

World War 2: Connecting w a Veteran (9)

Lloyd Evans, age 90, and a veteran of WW2 (as member of RCNVR and Combined Ops, like my father) kindly sent me 11 black and photos that the War Department - had they been aware back in 1942-43 - would have wished he'd not taken. Had his camera and film ever fallen into the wrong hands they would have given Axis powers something to think about related to the types of barges and guns the Allies were using, among other things.

But now I say his photos are invaluable to students of the World Wars and Canadian history. I'm happy to also say my father appears in at least one, taken beside an LCM (landing craft mechanized) somewhere in southern England, likely Southampton or Isle of Wight.

["My Dad peeks out from behind sailor, third left"]

After seeing the second set of photos, including the one in which my father appears, I wrote to Mr. Evans:

Hi Lloyd, Thanks a lot for the photos, good shots of landing craft and a couple of Dad's buddies. Dad appears in the fifth photo, with fellows sitting beside landing craft, two are wearing white pith helmets and Dad is peeking out from between two other fellows. Red wavy hair in real life. Well done.

I heard back shortly thereafter:

I can remember most of those in the picture but not too positive 
of your Dad. While we were all together a lot of the time but separate quite a lot as we were on merchant ships a lot of the time like the time around South Africa took over 3 or so months. Combined Ops was so mixed up as you can see in the early part. Lloyd

By 'the early part', I think Lloyd means the early part of his story available for viewing at

And Lloyd is right, of course, about the long trip around Africa in 1943, on his way to the invasion in Sicily. He was separated from most of his mates for the duration. My father's trip was likely even longer. Going the long-way-around (because the Axis powers controlled the Mediterranean) took several months aboard the SS Silver Walnut because it kept having engine troubles. 'Submarine bait'  it was, on several occasions. I'll let Lloyd know that.

Top Photo by Lloyd

Last two by GH

No comments: