Local veteran George Cameron joined the army at age 17.

Local Veteran remembers the past

after becoming a soldier in 1944 George Cameron saw the end of World War 2.

It was 1944 in Manitoba when local veteran George Cameron joined the army at age 17, expecting to head overseas to fight for his country in the Second World War.

“I joined in Winnipeg, then I went overseas to Holland. And that was when the war ended, when I was over there,” said Cameron from his home in Nicholson, where he lives with his wife Margaret.

“So I volunteered for Japan. We were supposed to get a little leave, then head over to Japan. Then we got here (Canada), and as luck would have it, it was over again and we didn’t have to go there.”

The fighting was just ending in Holland when Cameron arrived, but that does not mean he and fellow soldiers were left with nothing to do.  Europe was completely ravaged by war, and there was much work to be done.

“You do a lot of cleaning up, and that sort of thing,” he said. “You don’t have to worry about filling your time, they fill it for you. There was always something to do.”

Buildings were smashed and needed to be cleaned up, while others were dangerous and needed to be checked out. An although his time there was short, he developed some very memorable friendships.

“Out of all of those guys that I was with, there are only three that I have been able to find since. And some of them are gone now too. You’d think you’d meet a lot of them back here, but you don’t. I don’t know where they go, if they came back or what they did.”

When Cameron finally made it back to Canada, he realized he did not have enough seniority to get out of the army. He ended up getting stationed in Ontario, assisting with a post-war issue that many people don’t know about.

“They sent me to Ontario to guard German prisoners that they still had over here. Before I got there, the old vets, they looked after them while we were in the war end of it. We took over from them so they could get out and go home.

“I was there until they moved most of the Germans out, they went back to Germany. And then they brought the Japanese people there. And we looked after them for a little while. I wasn’t there that long after that though, I don’t know how long the Japanese were there.”

The prison camp was located in Northern Ontario, just four or five miles outside of Marathon says Cameron.

“After that I entered civilian life. My dad had a farm, so I went home and worked with him there for a little bit, maybe six months or a year. Then we came west.”

After moving to British Columbia, Cameron entered the forestry industry, working as a timber faller.

“That’s what I did for quite a few years, always on the logging end of it. When we came from the Prairies we moved to Enderby, and then from there we came to Golden. We came here in ’62, so we’ve been here for quite a few days.”

Cameron is a member of the Royal Canadian Legion here in Golden, and has enjoyed being part of the Remembrance Day ceremony for many years. Unfortunately he can no longer partake in the march as he cannot walk that far.

“You have to walk from the Legion to the Cenotaph, and I can’t do that anymore. So I’ll just get a ride to the Cenotaph and watch from there. But I do like going down there, it’s a good ceremony.”

 

Just Posted

UPDATE: Highway 1 in Golden reopened

UPDATE: The Trans-Canada Highway east of Golden has been reopened. Crews were… Continue reading

Golden council considers cannabis zoning

The Town of Golden is going through the motions and deciding how… Continue reading

Martin O. brings unique and comedic sound to Civic Centre

Golden Star Staff Martin O. is described as a vocal virtuoso, and… Continue reading

Golden’s anonymous art showcases plethora of artists

Kicking Horse Culture opens its new exhibit at the Art Gallery of… Continue reading

Film Kicks: Don’t Worry He Won’t Get Far on Foot

In the second showing of the Film Kicks season, Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney… Continue reading

VIDEO: People with diabetes meet their alert dogs

A diabetic alert dog is trained to detect low blood sugar in people who have Type 1 diabetes

Hunter who saved B.C. man pinned inside smashed truck says ‘God was sending me to him’

Sayward man describes chance discovery of Duncan Moffat, 23, in northern Vancouver Island woods

Road-weary Canucks thumped 6-2 by Wild

Vancouver hosts the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday

Toronto private school didn’t report alleged sexual assault to police

Police say a sexual assault at an all-boys Catholic institution was not reported to them

China says butt out; Canada calls for release of “arbitrarily” detained Muslims

A Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman accused Canada’s envoy of going beyond their diplomatic roles

Dead Saskatoon tattoo artist’s skin removed and preserved

The skin was removed in honour of the well known artist’s work

B.C. Realtor suspended after helping intern forge note about sick grandma

Vancouver real estate agent Jaideep Singh Puri has to pay fine, take ethics course

Offensive Facebook post by Okanagan Conservative riding sparks outrage

Post taken down after Conservative MP in neighbouring riding condemns it and demands removal

Judge rules against ALC on rural B.C. subdivision

The ALC can’t change the definition of an acre, the judge ruled.

Most Read