Jerry Moreau was working as a mechanic in the 1950s, when he saw an army poster that was advertising jobs in the Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (RCME) Corps. He was 21-years-old and said that at the time, he thought it looked like a good career choice.
He joined the army and in 1952 he was sent to Korea. Moreau was attached to the Royal 22nd Regiment’s “Van Doos,” for the first six months and was then sent even closer to the front lines with the main brigade.
Moreau refers to his time in the military as the most intense and stressful time of his life. For 15 months he worked 18-hour days, seven days per week. His unit was located less than two miles away from the enemy front lines and he says the fighting was intense, and was always nearby.
“I was mostly repairing vehicles and trying to keep them running. The worst thing was that any vehicle that was going in the water would seize up. It was a constant battle to convince the drivers to grease their vehicles,” said Moreau.
He was supposed to come home after 12 months, but ended up having to stay an extra three months when the person who was supposed to relieve him never came. Moreau, who is now 88 years old, says that was the longest three months of his life.