Red River Métis/Anishinaabe grandfather from Sagkeeng First Nation, MB
|Date of Birth (y-m-d):
Members of 'C' Force from the East travelled across Canada by CNR troop train, picking up reinforcements enroute. Stops included Valcartier, Montreal, Ottawa, Armstrong ON, Capreol ON, Winnipeg, Melville SK, Saskatoon, Edmonton, Jasper, and Vancouver, arriving in Vancouver on Oct 27 at 0800 hrs.
The Winnipeg Grenadiers and the local soldiers that were with Brigade Headquarters from Winnipeg to BC travelled on a CPR train to Vancouver.
All members embarked from Vancouver on the ships AWATEA and PRINCE ROBERT. AWATEA was a New Zealand Liner and the PRINCE ROBERT was a converted cruiser. "C" Company of the Rifles was assigned to the PRINCE ROBERT, everyone else boarded the AWATEA. The ships sailed from Vancouver on Oct 27th and arrived in Hong Kong on November 16th, having made brief stops enroute at Honolulu and Manila.
Equipment earmarked for 'C' Force use was loaded on the ship DON JOSE, but would never reach Hong Kong as it was rerouted to Manila when hostilities commenced.
On arrival, all troops were quartered at Nanking Barracks, Sham Shui Po Camp, in Kowloon.
We do not have specific battle information for this soldier in our online database. For a detailed description of the battle from a Canadian perspective, visit Canadian Participation in the Defense of Hong Kong (published by the Historical Section, Canadian Military Headquarters).
View a map showing all commemorative features on Google Earth (a Hope Hinchey project).
|Munroe Lake, Manitoba, east of
|59 08' 45"; 98 12' 37"
No related information found. Please submit documents to us using the contact link at the top of this page.
|Date of Death (y-m-d)
|Cause of Death
|Killed In Action
|Cape Collinson Road Chai Wan Hong Kong China
|Sai Wan War Cemetery
|VIII. A. 12.
My great uncle’s name was Robert Blanchard and he was 27 years old when he was killed in action on December 23, 1941 during the Battle of Hong Kong. His mother was Métis (Red River) and Anishinaabe (Sagkeeng First Nation).
I was lucky to be able to access his military file, which gave me a lot of insight during that time of his life. His mother was unaware that he had left for Hong Kong until she received a letter from him on his way there. His death wasn’t confirmed to her until a year after he had been killed, and his exact date of death was confirmed to her 4 years later. I felt a deep connection reading through his file, and I was a bit emotional thinking about him and his life. I can’t even begin to imagine what that time was like for them, along with all the other soldiers and their families.
I’ve been on a reconnecting journey by learning and practicing some of the traditional Indigenous ways of living, and have a connection to both the Métis Nation and Sagkeeng First Nation.
It is important for me to honour my great-uncle’s legacy as an Indigenous veteran, and I encourage everyone to learn more about Indigenous veterans and to do what they can to advance reconciliation in Canada.
Updated by Julie Carver June 2023
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→ Related documentation for information published in this report, such as birth information, discharge papers, press clippings and census documents may be available via shared resources in our HKVCA Vault. It is organized with folders named using regimental numbers. Use the first letter of the individual's service number to choose the correct folder, then scroll to the specific sub-folder displaying the service number of your interest.
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Report generated: 25 Feb 2024.
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