The Veterans Came Together at Family and Naval Reunions
They Combined Efforts to Produce Rare WWII Books
Five significant books were produced by four of the Canadian men above
In an earlier post I share updated links to a rare, two-volume set of books (veterans' stories related to their involvement in key WWII operations from Dieppe to Normandy). The above photo - as found in St. Nazaire to Singapore: The Canadian Amphibious War, Vol. 1 - and another colour shot from my father's collection of the same five gentlemen is shared as well.
The colour shot is part of a group of photos in my possession, most taken and shared at navy reunions. I share more of them here along with others that are closely related. Informative, historical details are provided as well when possible.
Back, L - R: 'Gash', Clayton, and David Lewis (David wrote and collected
stories for St. Nazaire to Singapore (two lengthy volumes)
Front L - R: Doug and Al (full names are w top photo)
A link to collected stories by David Lewis is provided under the top photo and those interested in an example of Clayton Marks' efforts can link here to Short Story re Invasions of Sicily and Italy.
Details related to more of the books and stories the men wrote and published will be provided in the next or a future post. GH
Doug Harrison (left) and Art Bailey at Parkwood Hospital in London.
Taken 1987, perhaps when visiting WWII veterans, or Legion members.
Both men are contributors to St. Nazaire to Singapore
Doug Harrison (Norwich), Ed Whelan (Guelph), Art Bailey (London)
Art and Ed. Taken in Guelph, June 1988
Art Bailey, Doug Harrison, and Joe Watson of Simcoe, ONT
Location/date of photograph is not known
Art 'Gash' Bailey and my father (Doug H.) are mentioned together in a significant story re a training exercise (Schuyt 1) aboard landing crafts near Irvine, Scotland prior to the Dieppe Raid.
Joe Watson, as found in news article, circa 1944
As well, Joe Watson and my father served on the same landing crafts for some period of time during the invasion of Sicily and both mention a particular episode in stories or newspaper interviews.
My father and Joe Watson and several other Canadians in Combined Ops ended their WWII service (after two years of service overseas, Jan. 1942 - Dec. 1943)) at a Combined Operations School on Vancouver Island (Jan. 1944 - discharge, Sept. 1945). Here are five sailors ready to board a train for their trip out west:
L-R: Don Linder, Kitchener; Doug Harrison, Norwich; Joe Watson, Simcoe;
Buryl McIntyre, Norwich; Chuck Rose, Chippawa ONT. Toronto, Jan. 1944
L-R: Linder, Rose, McIntyre, Watson, Don Westbrook (Hamilton)
At HMCS Givenchy III (1944-45): J. Watson, C. Rose, F. Bruce
Sailors who had initially served as raw recruits in the '40s made attempts to meet again at reunions or other significant occasions. The next two photos were taken at the Woodstock Navy Club in August, 1988. The third was likely taken the same day in my parents' backyard in Norwich (16 miles south of Woodstock). I say this because the shirts worn by 3 - 4 men all match up in the three shots.
L - R: Al Kirby, Woodstock; Robert Brown, Brantford; Norm Bowen,
standing, from Constance Bay; Doug Harrison, Norwich
We can now see Art 'Gash' Bailey of London (far left) and Nelson
Langevin of Hull, Quebec is standing in Norm Bowen's spot.
Now in Norwich: Al Kirby, Doug Harrison, Nelson Langevin and Art
Bailey. The sailors were proud to sail under the White Ensign.
Norm Bowen, Doug Harrison and their commanding officer, Jake Koyl, are mentioned in one story written by my father. Norm asked Dad to help load navy duffel bags and my dad refused. Jake Koyl had to speak with my father about the refusal and meted out a punishment.
The first two paragraphs of the story follow:
In the spring of 1942, I was stationed for a short time in navy barracks at Roseneath, Scotland. As we Canadian sailors departed from Roseneath I was detailed to work on a baggage party by Leading Seaman Bowen. I told him I wasn’t fussy about handling kit bags and hammocks, to which he replied, “Fussy or not, just get at it and lend a hand.”
After a short argument I refused (which is bad, real bad) and he took me to have a chat with our huge, no-nonsense commanding officer Lt/Comdr Jacob Koyl, later to be known as Uncle Jake. L/S Bowen explained his case about my refusal to Mr. Koyl. With that, Bowen was dismissed and the commanding officer laid his big hand on my shoulder and started to recite, without benefit of the navy book, King Rules (KR) and Admiralty Instructions (AI) about the seriousness of refusing an order.
Lt. Cmdr Koyl is far left (back row). And among others we see Al Kirby,
far right (front). Camp Saunders, Egypt 1943, prior to Operation Husky
The full story informs me that Dad's punishment lasted awhile but all ended well... eventually. (Link)
Photo of Jake Koyl and others at a reunion, perhaps.
As found in St. Nazaire to Singapore, page 333
More photos - with a few more details attached - soon to follow.
Please link to more photographs at Imperial War Museum, 2014 (1)
Unattributed Photos GH