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Adventure, Training and the Cameron Highlanders

Heroes Remember

Adventure, Training and the Cameron Highlanders

I was glad because I, after I got into the drill hall, some of the people that were in the militia whom I was with, well I felt kind of happy about the whole thing. Like I said before I was an adventurer and I was looking for, get in the army or any one of those services and, and, and see the world, you know because it was a war. It didn’t really enter my mind that it was going to be anything dangerous, it was an adventure, honestly. Interviewer: After you volunteered... where did you go for basic training? We did all our training in Landsdown Park. It wasn’t for long. We moved, later on when we were ready to go to Halifax we were transferred, our unit was transferred to Borden. And then we did a little bit more training until they, they got a train set up and they came right into the site track, they had right in Borden. I believe it’s still there. It lead to one of the big store houses. Interviewer: How would you describe the training that you received both at Landsdown Park and at camp Borden? Well I tell you, my training being in the NPAM for so long, I had all the training It was just a, what I was getting later, was just an improvement or something new that came out. I really loved it. I would go on the ranges with the machine gun and Vickers machine gun with a belt you know, and I was just happy as old hell you know. Interviewer: At that time, the Ottawa Highlanders of, of or the Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa were a machine gun battalion? It was, yes, and they stared off actually with a, with a platoon. There was an infantry rifle regiment and they started, before the war several years, they started a platoon of around thirty men with the Vickers, training, training a, a platoon with the Vickers machine gun. That was my first experience really, that I really liked. Because you get on the ranges there and you knock plates out, they put targets, steel, and you just open up on them. And I really enjoyed that.

Mr. Champoux recalls his sense of adventure upon enlisting and enjoying training on the Vickers machine gun with the Cameron Highlanders.

Robert Arthur Champoux

Mr. Champoux was born in Hull, Québec on March 21st, 1921. He lived there until the age of 8 when his father, a First World War Veteran, moved the family to Ottawa. Mr. Champoux had three brothers and four sisters; he was the third oldest child. When the war broke out he was attending Ottawa Technical High School. He left school, after his first year, to join the Army after failing to join the Navy and the Air Force (who were not yet recruiting). He left for Europe July 17th, 1940 and ended up stopping in Iceland where he remained for the next 10 months. Mr. Champoux’s wartime service saw him fighting on D-Day and in the Falaise Gap. He also fought in Calais and later on in Holland where he was wounded. Mr. Champoux got a job with the Mint upon returning to Canada. He joined the army again in 1948 retiring in 1965.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Robert Arthur Champoux
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
North America
13 Platoon - Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa

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