ON EXHIBIT NOW:
"C" FORCE - THE HONG KONG STORY
The exhibit features information on the volunteers who
came from the Niagara Peninsula, the story of the Canadian troops going to Hong Kong, the battle, the POW camps, the liberation and the trip home.
Shown to the left is Panel 1-Volunteers
which is regional. Following the same format, the remaining nine panels sequentially covers topics to tell the full story of Canadian troops going to Hong Kong, the battle, the POW camps, the liberation and the trip home. An overview of each panel follows.
Project Growth Opportunities:
Intersested parties could develop their own panel 1 with their regional volunteers depicted to add to the exhibit until all Canadian Hong Kong Veterans are identified and their service and sacrifice commemorated. The exhibit was designed to be a travelling exhibit, and starts its on loan* tour at the Hong Kong Veterans Commemorative Association convention in August 2020.
To check availability or reserve this exhibit contact
Niagara Military Museum at: email@example.com
PANEL 1 – VOLUNTEERS
- “C” Force Members of the Niagara PeninsulaSoldiers from the Counties of Lincoln and Welland
- Soldiers from other parts of the Niagara PeninsulaMember from the Argyle & Sutherland Highlanders
- Members from the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry Regiment
- Sailors aboard the HMCS Prince Robert
PANEL 2 THE CALL TO ARMS:
On September 10, 1941, a telegram was sent from the Government of the United Kingdom to the Government of Canada to send reinforcements to Hong Kong. The Royal Rifles of Canada (RRC) from Quebec and the Winnipeg Grenadiers (WG) were recommended.
PANEL 3 NURSING SISTERS:
Kay Christie and Anna Waters, two nursing sisters, had the dubious distinction of being the first Canadian nursing sisters to be prisoners of war.
JOHN ROBERT OSBORN, VC:
Osborn, a Warrant Officer Second Class, held an appointment as Company Sergeant-Major (CSM) for A Company in the 1st Battalion, The Winnipeg Grenadiers. With a battle taking place at Mount Butler, John Osborn lost his life and was awarded the Victoria Cross posthumously.
The Royal Rifles of Canada, stationed in Newfoundland, "promoted" Gander to sergeant who became the regimental mascot, travelled to Hong Kong with them and was awarded the Dickin Medal, often referred to as the equivalent of the Victoria Cross for animals.
PANEL 4 – THE TRIP TO HONG KONG
On October 27, 1941, HMCS Prince Robert left Vancouver as she was the escort ship to the HMT Awatea which was a New Zealand liner converted to a troop ship. The Prince Robert had a crew of 241 and carried four army officers and 106 ranks of the Royal Rifles of Canada. The Awatea carried the balance of “C” Force which numbered 96 officers and 1,877 other ranks.
PANEL 5 – THE BATTLE
The battle took a great toll on the Canadians with 290 killed or missing and 493 wounded. This however, was not the last of their suffering, life in the POW camps was also deadly. It was sometimes said the lucky ones were the ones who died in battle.
PANEL 6 – POWS
With the fall of Hong Kong on December 25, 1941, the Canadian defenders were held at North Point, Shamshuipo and Stanley camps.
PANELS 7 & 8 – LIBERATION
On the day after the second atomic bomb was dropped at Nagasaki, Japan on August 9, 1945, Japan agreed to the Potsdam Conference terms of unconditional surrender. Japan's surrender, liberation and the journey home are covered on these panels.
PANEL 9 – REPATRIATION
Of those Canadians who surrendered at Hong Kong on December 25, 1941, approximately 900 were kept in Hong Kong camps while the balance of about 750 were taken to work camps in Japan. The Prince Robert left Manila on October 2 and arrived at Esquimalt on October 20 with 27 Canadians, 17 British, 1 RCAF officer and 15 Roman Catholic Missionaries, all from the far east.
PANEL 10 – THOSE THAT NEVER CAME HOME:
Over 1,000 Commonwealth soldiers died in battle and some 2,300 wounded died later while in Japanese confinement. There are two main cemeteries in Hong Kong, Sai Wan War Cemetery is the main cemetery for those who died in battle and after in the hands of the Japanese. The MEDALS awarded and HKVCA INFORMATION is provided.
To check availability or reserve this exhibit contact Niagara Military Museum at: firstname.lastname@example.org