Page 8 - The Halifax Explosion & Going to Siberia
ISSUE : Issue 34
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1983/8/1
said, "The magazine is afire at Wellington Barracks. I'm calling for volunteers to go up there to see what you can do about fighting this fire. If the magazine blows up," he said, "you'll go up if you're here just the same as you were on top of it-- there's that much explosives in that hole." So I volunteered to go, and there v/ere 20 men volunteered to go with me. When we got up there, the navy had a line? up from down in the magazine right across the drill grounds over to the other side. And they were just passing boxes of ammuni? tion like that, from one to the other, car? rying it out. So the officer that was in charge there, he said to me, "Sergeant, we've got all the help we need here. The North End for two miles is flattened. Take your men and go down there and start rescu? ing people." He said, "Martial law's been declared and you can commandeer any kind of a vehicle for taking wounded to the hos? pital. Leave the dead where they lay, and just take the wounded." So I worked in that all that day till 10 o'clock that night. We were picking up those wounded here and there. Oh, there were a lot of people wounded--although there were hun? dreds dead where they were. And after we got out all we could find alive, we started piling up the dead outside, piling them up in the road. And there were vehic? les taking them away all the time. And there was a blizzard of a snowstorm came that night. It was 10 o'clock when I got back to the Armouries. I don't know where my men went, there were only half a dozen came back with me. And the next morn? ing the regimental sergeant-major had the bugler blow the "Fall in" again, and we fell in. And he said, "They've been piling dead in that schoolhouse right across from the Armouries there. There's no roof or an? ything on it. I want you fellows to go o- ver there and start sweeping the snow off of them and washing their faces," he said, "so people coming in might identify their own." So that's the job we had that fore? noon, cleaning the faces of the dead. And there were some awful sights there, too. Some of them, wasn't much of a face on them. We worked in that till we got that all cleaned up, all that day. Then all of us fellows that worked in that dirty work all that time, we were sent out of there, and we rested for three days. Then we marched back in again, and went o- ver to Dartmouth on patrol duty--stores were all broken, no windows in them, most of them boarded out. And we were just pa? trolling the streets there to see that no- Best Western Claymore Inn P. 0. Box 1720, Antigonish, Nova Scotia B2G 2M5j Phone 863-1050 - Telex 019-36567 Licensed Dining Room and'Lounge 52 Modern Rooms ENTERTAINMENT CENTRE OF CAPE BRETON Joe's Vfeirehouse The Food Emporium Cape Breton's Newest and Largest Restaurant SPECIALIZING IN AGED PRIME CUTS OF ROAST BEEF & STEAKS & ONE OF THE MOST UNIQUE SALAD BARS IN THE MARITIMES! (8) CABARET] OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK 'TIL 3 A.M. Live Entertainment Nightly 424 Charlotte street 539-6686 539-0408 RESTAURANT CABARET BANQUET FACILITIES ARE AVAILABLE / NEW DA New Dawn is a com serving Cape Breto projects which bene HOUSING, FINAN SERVICES, COMM RESOURCE CENT BUSINESS CONSU If you would like mc or if you have a pro discuss it with you c Phone 539-9560, 53 What is if%' WN ENl munity economic d( 1 Island and we une fit our community. :iAL COUNSELLI' UNITY INFORMA 'E, COMMUNITY LTANTS. re information on t ect in mind, give us nd assist in its real 9-9561. 'ERPRISES? velopment corporation ertake a diversity of G, SENIOR CITIZEN TION, VOLUNTEER TELIDON PROJECT, ie activities of New Dawn, a call. We will be happy to zation.
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