© Stephen H Garrity (2014)
I was born and raised in Verdun, Quebec, Canada, a city which is part of the Island of Montreal. I graduated from Verdun High School in 1939 and went to MacDonald College for teacher training. I taught for two years at Riverview School, then in February 1942, I enlisted in the RCAF.
This picture, taken in 1939 at McDonald Collage, has myself on the left, and next to me is Randal West. Our friendship eventually led to the meeting with first Randal's mother, Esther, and then after accepting a dinner invitation from her, met his sister, Maureen (Reeny) and it was love at first sight.
The recruitment mugshot, and the ID card.
Montreal's St. Patrick's Day Parade, in 1942. At a time of total war, the military was part of everyday life and always showing its colours. This is the Precision Squadron.
Number 1 Precision Squad on parade. I was No. 1 Marker, center row.
Number 5 Manning Depot, Lachine, QC, Barrack Hut # 27. Failure to have one's blankets folded in the precise fashion, or not to have a spotless, gleaming waxed floor, meant the loss of a weekend pass. Our barrack room was kept in impeccable condition. Note the rifles slung on the bunks at the back of the room.
The white flash on the caps denoted that these were aircrew trainees. This shot, taken at a ball game in Ottawa, shows a wide variety of dynamic charactors, some enjoying the break, others asleep, but what is quite humorous, is that they have all taken their rifles to the game!
I was posted to Lachine Manning Depot, where I served in a precision squad for three months. My next posting was to ITS at Victoriaville, Que.
Escape and Evasion