Language selection


Crossing of the English Channel

Heroes Remember

Crossing of the English Channel

The, the sixth came along and we took off. And the sea was still very, very, the English Channel was very rough. They had bunks on, on each side of the landing craft. Three layers and I was lucky I thought to be on the bottom layer. But the guy on the third layer was sick, and oh hell, and he wasn’t the only one. You know what that rough water, never in all my life made me sea sick, and I was on ships many, many times, rough and everything and never, never sick, touch wood. My wife can’t even get in a row boat. I had to put that in. But anyways we, between that we had to wait and get the order to move again. So, the second was the third and then the fourth we started moving up some. But then, all of a sudden there off and we’re going across the channel. The water was so rough that one of the moorings on, on couple of, of a Bren guns broke, and it was just like a domino thing. Well, it’s a good thing that some of us were out to the carrier and I was checking something on my carrier. But there were other people there. Making sure, checking the chains and everything. And just happened to look, and I could see this thing moving with the and it was one of the carriers. It wasn’t mine but it was somebody else’s. So I, I alerted some of the guys and I was pointing over because the sea was making them, the storm was so rough that. Anyways we got the men out. We were very, very lucky otherwise it would have had domino sequence and it would’ve been forget about going out there, on the invasion. We’re still looking forward to this.

Mr. Champoux describes the crossing of the English Channel on the way to France as part of the D-Day invasion. Due to rough seas, one of the moorings on the Bren guns broke.

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
Battle of Normandy
13 Platoon - Cameron Highlanders of Ottawa
Machine Gunner

Copyright / Permission to Reproduce

Related Videos

Date modified: