Snider, Chris

Chris Snider was born March 19, 1932 in Sunbury, Pennsylvania.  His parents were Canadian but were living in the U.S. at the time, and as the 1930s unfolded they moved a few more times, eventually landing in Oakville, Ontario.  The realities of the Great Depression had kept them on the move, as Chris’s father looked for steady work.  Chris’s father was a veteran of both the Boer War and the Great War, and by the time they were in Oakville, he and the family were getting back on their feet – and just at that time the Second World War began.  Chris’s father tried to enlist again, but this time he was asked to play a role in Canada’s Home Guard, and Chris grew up watching these meetings, and experiencing the war as a young boy and teenager.  He began high school not too long after the war, and towards the end of his time in school Chris joined the regular army, just as the Cold War was beginning to become a fact of life for Canadians.  He was training for a commission just as the Korean War started to make the headlines.  Chris’s training took place mainly in Camp Borden, during which time he was assigned to the PPCLI.  As a young officer it became his role to train the men, many of which went to Korea on drafts – but often without the junior officers.  Chris’s time did come though, and he went to Japan on an American troop transport, and later to Korea.  He came under fire his first day in combat; on a later mission he would be awarded the Military Cross.  The recommendation written by his commanding officer can be seen in the photos at the bottom of this page.  Chris also took part in the significant battle for Hill 355, a piece of high ground that all sides wanted.  That battle – and the rest of the war – ended with the ceasefire in 1953.  Chris returned to Canada, and he decided to stay in the military.  He also met a young woman named Maurine and married – and a few days later he found himself deployed to Cyprus.  He went on to complete three tours in West Germany as part of Canada’s NATO contingent during those tense Cold War years.  He went on to Afghanistan in the early 80s, and Chris finished his career in London, having attained the rank of Brigadier-General.  Chris Snider was interviewed at the Sunnybrook Veterans’ Wing in Toronto by a delegation of Crestwood students in August 2023.