One Soldier's Story 1939-1945: From the Fall of Hong Kong to the Defeat of Japan

By George S. Macdonell | Go to book overview

Chapter One
Enlistment

On September 3, 1939, when Britain declared war on Nazi Germany, I was 17 years, three weeks old. I was living with my aunt and uncle and their two young children in the little town of Listowel, Ontario, approximately one hundred miles northwest of Toronto. I was a Grade 10 student at the Listowel high school, and in those days my enthusiasm for school was limited primarily to the football team.

My mother and father separated when I was 12 years old, and when I was 13 my mother died. After her untimely death, I went to live with my Uncle George and his family. He was a famous, retired professional hockey player and, not only was he one of the greatest players to ever tie on skates, he was one of the finest gentlemen to ever grace the National Hockey League. His picture is prominently displayed today in Canada’s Hockey Hall of Fame. Uncle George and his wife, Irma, were wonderful to me and he became my coach in life, my role

-19-

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One Soldier's Story 1939-1945: From the Fall of Hong Kong to the Defeat of Japan
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • Table of Contents 9
  • Foreword 11
  • Preface 13
  • Acknowledgments 15
  • Introduction 17
  • Chapter One - Enlistment 19
  • Chapter Two - Wolseley Barracks — Boys’ Town 31
  • Chapter Three - The Royal Rifles 39
  • Chapter Four - Hong Kong — The Colony and Its Defences 65
  • Chapter Five - The Battle for Hong Kong 71
  • Chapter Six - Prisoner of War (1942–1945) 93
  • Chapter Seven - Japanese Surrender and Rescue 127
  • Chapter Eight - Going Home 151
  • Chapter Nine - Back to School 163
  • Chapter Ten - The Transition 183
  • Epilogue 199
  • Bibliography 201
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