Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 47 > Page 24 - Austin Roberts' Second World War

Page 24 - Austin Roberts' Second World War

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1988/1/1 (297 reads)

BYTHESEA Cape Smokey's 1,000 foot vertical Ski Hill opens December 16th (weather conditions permitting) for another exciting season. Our improved runs, lifts and snow-making, in place for last year's Jeux Canada Games, will offer skiers a challenging and exciting ski experience. Nordic skiers have the choice of 17 kilometers of groomed trails in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, or they can strike out on their own to enjoy the breath-taking scenery. Guests of our White Birch Inn are offered complimentary cross-country ski equipment during their stay. Our White Birch Inn and Atlantic Coffee Shop open January 8th and special packages are being offered again this year. Come stand atop Cape Smokey, take in the magnificent view of sparkling white snow against the brilliant blue ocean, slide your ski goggles into position, and push off. Ski the Spectacular.. .Ski by the Sea! For information on the Cape Smokey ski Experience, call or write: Keltic Lodge P.O. Box 70 Ingonish Beach, Victoria County Nova Scotia BOC ILO Telephone: (902) 285-2880 Keltic Lodge >c Department of Tourism Brian Young, Minister that. So it went on and on and on and on. On Christmas Day, now, December the 25th, we were in an area of ruined build? ings, just bits and pieces of buildings here and there. About a 3-acre compound, you know. You were thinking about how you could stand, now with shells and things. And when dark came, we came out to fight, again. They sent a bunch--they sent a feeler in to see what happened, and we blew them away again. So they sent in a white flag, then, to talk to the colonel. They took messages back and forth. At 12 o'clock on Christmas Day, the Canadians surren? dered. But they had a guarantee that at least we would be taken prisoners, not shot. That was Decem? ber the 25th, 1941. (What did you do for Christmas that year?) Went to sleep. Each and everybody. One of the buglers blew a bugle and announced that there had been a surrender. I remem? ber- -3 of us had a hole dug, we were in. We just looked at one another and laid down and went to sleep, the 3 of us. Nothing to say, and just so tired that you didn't care what the hell had happened. You had done all you could do, and that was it. We had no idea of what was going to happen, at all, at all, at all. So, next day we never saw anybody at all. They didn't come where we were, or anywhere near us, or any-, thing else. In the afternoon, the colonel said, "Well, try to get the names of the ones who are dead, and the ones who are wounded, and the ones that are alive." But they wouldn't let us out of our compound. Once we tried to get out, we found that there were lots of them there then. They wouldn't let us out. So we waited 3 days there, before they'd let us go out to pick up our men. We found out after that they wanted to pick up theirs first. They didn't want us to know how many of theirs had been killed. They wanted to pick up their men first, and clean it up. I often wish that I'd had a camera. Of course, they wouldn't have let us keep it, anyway. But I often wish that I had had one. (For what?) Well, people talk about war and this and that, but they really don't know much about it. Now, part of this land we had fought over was bamboo stuff about that high. (Three or four feet high?) Yeah. In the fighting now, in both ways, it got set afire. So anybody that was there, they got burned along with the grass and stuff as it burned. I know when we went to (get our dead)--now, it was 3 days, as I say. The temperature's about 90, 99 degrees each day. So when we went to bury these people, they were practically coming apart. I remember one fellow, we backed up to him, caught him by a leg. We were just putting them in shellholes and covering them over, whatever way we could. We got ahold of him, and we started, you know. Went a little ways. My friend said to me, "Don't you think he's light?" And I said, "You look behind." He said, "No, you look." All we had was the two legs, you know. Then we come across--one spot, now, there were 9 officers and about 18, 20 men of ours. They had been captured, tied up with * QUALITY SAME-DAY DRY CLEANING * 6 DAYS A WEEK * Vogue Cleaners Wedding Gown Cleaning & Heirlooming a Specialty GLACE BAY ** • SYDNEY MACLEOD'S TRUCKING ltd. BIG ENOUGH TO GIVE GOOD SERVICE • SMALL ENOUGH TO KNOW YOUR NAME! 539-0070 562-7093 Mary Browrfs FHed ChiGken. King Street Welton Street Kings Road Sydney River North Sydney EAT IN & DRIVE THRU & HOME DELIVERY: 794-4410 Sydney EAT IN & DRIVE THRU EAT IN Mary Bix>wn has the best l's in town. (24)
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