Thursday, November 11, 2010
A Day to Reflect...
As today is Remembrance Day in Canada, I thought it might be a good thing to post up an entry dedicated to my Grandfather, Clarence Pearson Dunphy. Initially, I believe, he was in a militia unit but then enlisted in the Canadian Army December 16th 1940 and was assigned to the 14th A.A. Battery in Halifax, Nova Scotia. As he enlisted as General Service (GS), he was sent overseas in July 18th 1944 to the U.K. and then was landed in Northwest Europe (France) November 18th 1944.
Upon arrival in Europe, he was re-assigned as a 2nd on the Bren, 'A' Company, Queens Own Cameron Highlanders of Canada (Rgt), 6th Infantry Brigade of the 2nd Canadian Infantry Division and fought in Holland and Germany. He was wounded February 5th 1945 when the jeep he was travelling in hit a mine or unexploded demolition charge (his explanation) during an attack. He spent the next month recovering in hospital before being returned to duty in March. He was then returned to Canada in April before being discharged in May 16th 1945.
He was the recipient of:
The 1939-45 Star awarded for six months service on active operations between Sep39 and May 1945.
The France and Germany Star for service in France/Holland /Germany between June 1944-March 1945.
The Defence Medal for service in the U.K. 1939-1945.
Canadian Volunteer Service Medal (CVSM) with Bar for volunteering for overseas serice and serving at least 60 days outside Canada.
The War Medal 39-45 awarded for 28 days between September 1939 and September 1945.
It was difficult to get him to talk of the war but he did open up on a few occasions. One sad story he told was of was a young replacement that came into the lines in the middle of the night. Taking up a position in the same slit trench as my Grampa, he was killed by a sniper in the morning when he put his head up and asked "So where are the Germans?"
He mostly kept it light. He used to joke that a shrapnel wound on the back of his neck was where a German soldier shot him for messing around with his girlfriend!
Pictured above before going overseas...
Picture upon arrival back in Canada. The strain and aging of combat is plainly etched in his face.