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Stalin's Second Front: The Raid

Heroes Remember

Stalin's Second Front: The Raid

We were not involved with this. But we heard all about it. We saw some movies that the, that the Brits or Canadians, captured after the, after the war. It’s been shown on tv. Actual, action pictures that happened there and it was really gruesome. Interviewer: How did it affect morale? Actually we talked about it but the, the morale you know we’d been in uniform for so long by this time, that we sort of figured well, well we’re pretty lucky we couldn’t, you know our brigade might’ve gone there instead of them you know It was a, it was a terrible thing that happened but we didn’t know how bad, really. We had an observer, a lieutenant, he spoke very good. He was American. He spoke very good English, German rather. And he was with the with our regiment, but also had something to do with spying, intelligence. And he was asked to, to go with the 2nd Div. on that raid. Because they wanted, they wanted to capture the highest rank they could put their hands on and bring him back to the beach and put him on the boat and take him to England. That was the main, one of the, one of the things, there’s been a lot of stories about that. That, that wasn’t a second front of any kind. They were trying to see what they would have to do, if they did go, if we did go on the second front.

Mr. Champoux explains how “The Raid” affected the morale of Canadian troops who were left behind. He also reveals his opinion of the true reason behind sending soldiers there.

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
13 Platoon - Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa
Machine Gunner

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