This is what I found while looking for information about HMCS Prince Robert…
HMCS Prince Robert was a D.E.M.S.
HMCS Prince Robert
Click here to learn more about the ship
Canadian soldiers disembarking HMCS Prince Robert in 1941
I always questionned Canada’s involment in the defense of Hong Kong in 1941 as I was always troubled by how Great Britain considered Canada in the Second Word War, and the more I read about how England used Canadians in the defence of the British Empire the more I believe this to be true.
The Dieppe raid is an example and the Battle of Hong Kong is another one.
This is what I found on a Canadian soldier who fought this battle. Maurice Parker’s son pays homage to his father with this web site…
This web site is dedicated to my father.
Major Maurice A. Parker Commanding Officer, “D” Company, of the Royal Rifles of Canada, and to the brave men and women who fought a long ago nearly forgotten battle for the Island of Hong Kong. It was a battle that some say should never have been fought, but it was. Now….it should never be forgotten.
My father, Major M.A. Parker, from Quebec City, Quebec, was This web site is in his honour.
How this project began:
On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. That same day, 6 hours later, at 08:00 hrs, they attacked the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong. The world took little notice of that “incident”. For those of us who had a family member, or in many cases family members or friends in mortal danger, it was a different matter. It was a day never to be forgotten.
The saga of that long ago battle needs to be told. The defenders of Hong Kong fought a valiant fight and they need to be honoured. It was a hopeless effort from the beginning but they fought on anyway. They fought, they were wounded, and they died. After 18 long cruel days of non-stop struggle they were finally captured on Christmas Day, 1941.
Those who survived began a stint in hell that would last for 44 months When I was in high school, my English Literature teacher assigned the class the task of writing an essay on one of our personal heroes. We were to write about what he or she did, when, where, why and how what he or she did had impacted on history. I had just finished reading a book about General George S. Patton, the U.S. Tank Commander who had landed in Sicily and cut a swath through the German defenses all the way to Berlin. I chose to write about him.
I got a pretty good mark for my effort, and a note from my teacher saying, “Good work. Why did you choose Patton? You should have looked a little closer to home.” At that time I didn’t understand what he meant. I was only when I got a little older, and a wee bit wiser, that I understood his message. I should have written about my Dad.
It dawned on me that this gentle, shy, ordinary down-to-earth man who was my Father and whom I saw every day had done some extraordinary things in his life. He had fought in the Battle of Hong Kong and survived the hardship of 44 months of captivity at the hands of the Japanese in WWII. Then he had come home and continued to raise a family. He was an ordinary man who had done extraordinary things under extraordinary circumstances. Is that not the essence of a hero?
It was not until after my Mother died in 1998 and I came into possession of his memorabilia that I began to put together this account of the things he endured. It is a story of great courage and great endurance.
It is the story of my Dad and of the men with whom he fought and suffered. Dad died on August 10, 1985. I’m sorry I took so long to get started on this “essay”. I should have written about my Dad in the first place. To me he is a bigger hero than George S. Patton.
The teacher who told me to look a little closer to home for my hero was Major A.A. MacMillan, M.I.D., the best teacher I ever had. In December 1941 he was a Lieutenant in “D” Company of The Royal Rifles of Canada. He had served with Dad and endured the same hardships in Hong Kong. He has gone now, but I hope if he were to read this he would give me an “A”, at least for effort.
Click here to visit the site…
Click here to visit a site dedicated to Hong Kong veterans.