My husband, RMC Number 2812, was in the Class of 42, the War Class. He had completed a 2-year Finance course at Mt.Allison University before entering RMC, and after his first year and a half at RMC found he had completed the military subjects and was repeating civil subjects already learned at Mt. A.. He and Officer Cadet Don McEachern decided to get in on the ground floor of Armoured Recce training, something new and exciting, and both left the college in the fall of second year, before graduating. Off to Camp Borden, and on to the war.
Don served as a troop leader in the South Alberta Regt ( 29th Cdn Armoured Recce Regt , 4th Armoured Division ) and his Squadron leader was Major Dave Currie. Currie was the only Canadian armoured soldier to ever be awarded the Victoria Cross, which he qualified for at the battle of the Falaise Gap, in St. Lambert sur Dives in Normandy. All of the major`s officers were either killed or wounded in that three-day battle, and Don was one of the wounded, was hospitalized at Bayeau and returned to take his troop eventually to Oldenberg in northern Germany.
In 2007 French President Jacques Chirac awarded Don the French Legion D`Honneur for his services in helping liberate France . This was presented to him in Fredericton, N.B. by the French Ambassador Daniel Jouanneau. If you are interested I can forward the newspaper article and picture of this presentation, for you news of ex-cadets.
Don tells me that you are acquainted with Danny and Sheila McLeod in Kingston. Don and Danny fought side-by-side in the S.A.R.`s through Belgium, Holland, and Germany. In Holland Col. Wotherspoon asked Don to write Danny up for the Military Cross, but the resulting citation, while completely accurate, was too elaborate . The col. had it re-written appropriately, but lacking much detail of Danny`s bravery, and the MC was presented him.
If you are interested in the Fredericton write-up please let me know by e-mail. No phone calls please due to deafness.
Sincerely – – – Valerie Stewart
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