Hall, John

John Hall was born in the Canadian West in the early 1920s.  He grew up against the backdrop of the Great Depression, though he said he was lucky to have been sheltered from the toughest times.  With his brother he made his way to western Ontario, riding the rails and working the ports of Lake Superior.  While his brother stayed and worked the mines, John finished school and joined the armed forces in Toronto, eventually landing in the First Hussars.  After training he boarded the Queen Elizabeth troopship and headed to Britain, where he spent time in Aldershot, completing his tank crew training.  John became a radio operator and main gun loader and a member of a Sherman tank crew.  John went ashore in France a few weeks after D-Day and the liberation of Caen, and he saw his early action in Falaise and the ensuing Battle of Normandy.  From there he moved through Belgium and the Netherlands, where he has fond memories of the civilians greeting the troops.  When the war concluded, John returned to Canada and built a life for himself.

We met John at the Sunnybrook Veterans Wing in July 2017, when he was interviewed by Crestwood students Arielle Meyer and Samara Black.