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Archive for the ‘military’ Category

M Company 3 RCR Hohenfels West Germany

Another picture from the past. I was with the Canadian Army before I joined the British Army. I took this picture in Hohenfels West Germany. These are M company’s APCs lined up in the parking lot before heading out on Exercise Reforger.

M company was one of the 5 mechanized companies that comprised the 3rd Battalion of the Royal Canadian Regiment – one of the infantry battalions that formed in conjunction with other elements, 4CMBG (Canadian Mechanized Brigade Grouping).

The vehicles that you are seeing here are the old M113s, each has a .50 cal mounted on top and each carries an 8 man infantry section. Reforger was quite a pleasant experience as we drove round Southern Germany. We would set up our ‘Leiger’ at night around small towns generally with easy access to the pub in mind. A leiger is a kind of defensive formation where both APCs and tanks would be holed up to rest, refuel and recover. I believe the word ‘lieger’ comes from some kind of Dutch or Afrikaans word that implies a defensive position of circled wagons. The problem is that a Leopard tank despite its armor can be quite vulknerable, but conversely it has massive hitting power under the right conditions.

I had a grand old time – officially rehearsing our role of repelling a Russian advance through CENTAG. Fortunately the Russian never came.

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Drinking mint tea in Morocco

Mohammad – Asni – Morocco

We met this guy – Muhammad – one evening somewhere near the town of Asni in the high Atlas range. Muhammad (in green shirt) sold crystals beside the road and he told us where he had got them. We went there and it was a most remarkable sight – the whole valley was filled with these reddish purple crystals of what resembled amethyst and spikes of other similar material – the finer points of which I cant exactly remember. I filled up my backpack with as much as I could carry but the heat and terrain eventually found me abandoning the lot. Someone, somewhere near Agadir will find a pile of gems and wonder what pirate must have hidden them.

Here we are with Muhammad’s family – mother and father were in a courtyard outside – smoking hash. It was a real treat to visit Muhammad, he broke out a single worn old tape casette and we drank mint tea and communicated as best we could. Waving are his little brother and younger brother. When we left we gave him 3 pairs of flip flops to thank him for his hospitality. I wish now that we had given more.

In the picture are several members of A company from the old Queen’s Regiment – from left to right – Shawn Eves, Bev (My corporal at the time) Myself in the green sweater, Slev. On the right with legs across the picture – Birdsall and Kev Minnis’s legs(I think).

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old pics 151, originally uploaded by Mic2006.

I happened to be cruising the internet a few weeks ago and noticed in a guest book for my old Regiment – The Queen’s Regiment – the name of an old friend of mine – Andy Creech. We re-established contact after 21 years. Andy is on the left and I am on the right – a younger thinner me without a beard.

It sure is good to know that he and other friends from back then are still in contact and it bought back memories of many good times.

Andy is now married with children, having met his wife at the wedding of another old friend who had served with us in 2 platoon.

The photo is of poor quality taken with an old 110 snapshot camera – hence the grainy appearance. We were on patrol somewhere (I remember where but would sooner leave that unsaid) We had found this barn in which to have tea and waste some time and so that is exactly what we did. I remember these great big tractor tires lying on top of the hay; several people curled up in them and got some sleep. As for sleep, we were always tired, I remember starting to see things on more than one occasion – due I think to lack of sleep. I suppose a loaded gun and seeing things is probably not an ideal circumstance.

As for the old Regiment – it is no more. It became “The Princess of Wales Regiment” through some government restructuring. I am sure the new Regiment is a proud and worthy addition to the military but it is rather distressing to hear of the change.

Andy was amalgamated into the new regiment and went on to serve many more years – retiring if I recall in 1996. It looks like after I left they served in some rather “dodgy” places – glad to see he made it through.

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