Language selection


Close Call

Heroes Remember

Yeah... as long as I live. And the fortunate part about it is that nobody got hurt which was good. Interviewer: Tell me about this. We were, we were with RCMP and a translator, myself, and the Jordanian and I had to go up to Donny Lapatch for an investigation. Apparently they had made some accusation about incident, I don't wish to say because some of the stuff, just keep, but it was an incident. So it was pretty serious so we went up and on our way back the RCMP said, "I know where there's a good restaurant where you can get steak", I said "Oh my God, what I would do for steak, I could just die". And he said the best home fries you've ever seen and I said "Oh my God" so I said well.. We didn't have no time frame to be back. I mean like you know, you went out you did whatever it took and you got back. So I said, and I had money so I said let's go. So we went there. So it was, it was up on the hill kinda thing, the restaurant, right.. So we pull in, again remember I told you about a nervous stomach and the ability. So as it, back to my base training they taught you when you go in you observe right away. 360. What's here, what's behind you, what's on your side. So I went in and seen these vehicles in there right away right? Serbian vehicles were there, flags were up, flags in the back, big flag up. I said, "Ok," I want, said to the RCMP, "Who's here?" I said, "There's gotta be something here, that there has got to be a big wig that's a big flag on the back right?" I said, "Plus, there's escort vehicles," I said, there's gotta be somebody here "Oh", he says, " They stop in sometimes" and I said, "Who's here? So, " We'll be alright Perry, we're alright, we got camo flags on, this is the RCMP." I said "Ok, you're alright with it, you've been here, I'm alright with it". So we went in So we never leave our rifles, never leave your 9. No one has taken my 9 milly. No one's taken my rifle, ok. I'll die before you take my rifle, nobody's taking anything I got. So I went in and I had my M-16 and my 9 milly and we sat down. It was like an L shape, this restaurant was. I'll never forget it, there was a bar here , it was like a rest room and there was the restaurant.So we went in and we sat in the back corner. We come into the right there were some conference rooms, OK? So I'm watching I'm saying "There's someone in this building, you know". He said "just relax, we got a translator, we'll be ok". So we ordered our food and I didn't know nothing, before these two guys come running around, right. Two Serbian police officers they were, cause they had , had the MP badge on it and they had their 9 milly's out. They had them out and they had them pointed. The Jordanian was back on to them and I was front on to them and I was just about to eat and I stopped. And I said, Janet was her name and I said "Janet start talking, start talking, talk, talk, talk". So they're talking and he, they still got them pulled. And I'll never forget it, the breeches weren't back but their fingers were on the trigger. They're breeches were not. When you, when you look at a pistol ok, right away you say "Ok, well I can't do anything, my 9 millys down here, my M-16 is in between us." I mean, I'm totally. So the only thing I had to do is try to talk through this. So anyway, the Jordanian was back on. I said "Mohamed don't move, just don't move, don't turn around, don't do anything, just sit right where you're at. He said "What's going on?" I said "Just do not move ok? Trust me". So I says to Janet "Talk". So they're talking, they're talking, they're talking and they're talking. It seemed like forever right? And the RCMP is going, I mean I got my flap jacket on and everything I mean I got, we don't go anywhere without it; your cavalier and everything. And I said "Well, what, well what did we do?" You know we were just eating right. So anyway they're talking and all of a sudden the pistols go down. She looked over, she said, "They wanna see if you have anything up the breech." So I took my 9 milly out, popped the mag out and said nothing. Took the M-16, no magazine on the M-16, I said nothing on the M-16, and they just said "Pfft." And they walked back and they went back out. And my heart like just went up, up, up, up, up you know like. And the Jordanian he was just totally, just, just staring like and I said "Are you gonna be alright, are you alright?" And he was like, he'd said "I'm not doing this anymore, I'm not doing this anymore". I said "Everything's alright, it was just a misunderstanding, right". So the RCMP went "Wow." he said "I've never experienced that, man I never felt so helpless in a situation right." And I went right to him and said "See I told you there was someone in this building, I told you." And when we found out, long story short, his name was dragon, he was head of the Serbian. He had a conference meeting in there, and I guess they must have thought that we were a threat to him but we were not, we were just in eating, right. So the MP's came around, wanted us to check rifles and make sure that there was no ammunition in them but they did it in such an aggressive way that it causes, you know what I'm saying?

Mr. Campbell explains a close encounter with Serbian military police where he and an RCMP officer were eating at a restaurant and two MP’s came up to them with their guns drawn.

Perry Campbell

Mr. Campbell was born on August 19, 1963, in Goose Bay, Labrador. After moving to a fishing village in Newfoundland at the age of 13, Mr. Campbell tried to make it as a fisherman but unfortunately suffered from sea sickness and went back to Labrador. One day he saw a Canadian Forces ad that stated, "No life like it." Captivated by this, Mr. Campbell applied and within four months he began travelling across Canada for his basic training. After three years as an infantryman, Mr. Campbell decided to become a military police officer. As a military police officer Mr. Campbell was always in the face of danger, but none so great as when he was called upon for duty in the former Yugoslavia with the UN Peacekeeping unit in the early 1990s. Here he was a master corporal, heading up the main investigative body for all armies, managing his own shift, and being responsible for the Jordanian Armies. Mr. Campbell spent nine years as a military police officer, and if called upon today for service would not hesitate to answer the call of duty for his country and undying dedication to the Canadian Forces. Mr. Campbell has spent the last ten years in Yellowknife with his wife and children.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Perry Campbell
War, Conflict or Mission:
Canadian Armed Forces
Royal Canadian Regiment

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

Related Videos

Date modified: