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When I went on my first deployment which was to Golan Heights in 1983… so, when I went there, the job that I had there was a job that I’d already done, which was rations. So, I was at the Golan Heights, and I was one of the few lucky ones that managed to get off of camp three times a week because I’d have to drive the refrigerated van, and I’d have to go into the nearest village and pick up the fresh produce and milk, you know. So, all the fruits and vegetables and milk and bread. So, I’d make that trip three times a day. So, that got me off of camp at least… or not three times a day… three times a week, that would get me off of camp. So, that was my job in Israel.I had chances to go to the Syria side, but most of my work was on the Israeli side.There was a huge culture shock and a change in the way people operate and, you know, just the way they conduct business – that sort of thing. I had to get used to the way that the Israelis conducted business and, you know, the way they talked, and what not.I wouldn’t say fear, as much as… not knowing what you’re… what you’re going into. Back then, I was just a young fellow and never being out of Canada, you know, and my… I was… I had only been to three provinces before – Nova Scotia, Quebec, and Alberta – so, all of a sudden, going across the world, that in itself was a culture shock. But once you’re there, you know, you start talking to everybody else that’s in uniform and, you know, sharing experiences and what to expect. That sort of gets you set for what you’re going to experience during your time there.So, yeah, the first time was… there was a bit of apprehension, but you know, I had somebody with me and said, okay, this is the route you do, and this is what you say, and this is how you conduct yourself. So, once I got into that mindset, it was… it was okay.

Mr. Cromwell talks about his job while in the Golan Heights

Claude Cromwell

Claude “Ollie” Cromwell was born in Digby, Nova Scotia, and moved to Montréal as a young teenager. He joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 1979 and began a long career in military logistics.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
November 4, 2019
Person Interviewed:
Claude Cromwell
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Canadian Armed Forces
Warrant Officer

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