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Hello,

Where would I begin to research what units my uncles were in? My father was in the Canadian Forestry Corps in WW2, but I have no idea what units my uncles were in. One, if memory serves correct was in an armoured unit in WW2 and the other I think was in the Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineers in Korea. I would also like to research what medals they would have earned.

 

Thank you!

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Here is the link to Library and Archives Canada's research portal for military records: http://www.bac-lac.gc.ca/eng/discover/military-heritage/Pages/military-heritage.aspx

The records on the WWI soldiers are fairly complete - complete service files for men surnamed 'A' to 'P', attestation papers for all soldiers, 'Circumstances of Death' cards for most and war diaries. 

For WWII, unfortunately, far fewer of the records are either open or available electronically.  because of the 70 year rule, actual service files can only be accessed - I think - by relatives.  If the spouse or child of a serviceman/woman requests the records in writing, with proof of death, they can get it.  Otherwise, there is a list of published records at the LAC site.

Medal entitlement is not to difficult to make an educated guess at, for WWII and Korea, and Veterans Affairs and other sites will tell you the qualifying period for each medal.  So, for example, if you know an uncle went to Europe with an armoured unti, he almost ceratinly earned the 1939-45 Star, either the France & Germany Star or the Italy Star,  the Canadian Volunteer Service Medal with bar for overseas service and the Defence Medal.  Canadians in Korea earned the British 'Korea' medal and the UN Korea medal, in general.  Check here for descriptions of some: http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/remembrance/medals-decorations

I hope this is of some help.  feel free to post other questions or contact me if you like.

Peter 

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Hello Peter,

Thank you very much for the information! I am in contact with a gentleman from Honours and Awards / Décorations et citations Commemoration, Ottawa Headquarters / Commémoration, Bureau principal d'Ottawa who is helping me at the moment.

I may have further questions and much appreciated your offer!

Ken

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Update: Well, I have just about reached completion of detailing my father's unit (Canadian Forestry Corps). This has spurred an almost fanatical desire to find info on other military family members.

Some (very complicated :o) info. My mother was born in Ireland to an Irish father and a German mother. It was during the revolution. Her mother worked (hazy info here) for the German government  (Consulate maybe? Not sure of the Irish situation during those times). Her father beat a hasty exit from Ireland, stayed briefly with relatives in Ottawa before ending up in the St. Louis area of the US. (IRA connections? Quite possible given his rush to get out of Ireland and British connected Canada.) Her mother later emigrated to Canada. I would dearly love to flesh out the details of this!

During WW2, My Father, as mentioned above was with the Canadian forces as was one uncle (amroured unit). My maternal Grandfather's "new" family were in the US Airforce. My maternal Grandmother's family were in the German Navy and Luftwaffe. (Gerhard Homuth was a relative).

Another uncle was in Korea. My paternal Grandfather was with Canadian forces in WW1.

My idea, is to assemble some kind of collection of the medals my family earned. I have my father's already. Some (Gerhard's) will of necessity have to be replicas due to financial reasons.

Research has been rather difficult. I know of Gerhard via stories my mother related. My father met some of the family when he was in Germany. I still have an Imperial German flag they gave him. It is very faded due to time and storage conditions before it came into my possession. I know little else of Gerhard's family as my father rarely talked about his late war experiences. What I do know is from Wikipedia, and it is hardly reliable. For example,  since I started my research, the medal entries on Gerhard's page have changed 3 times.

So to end this rambling, I really admire those researchers who manage to navigate this labyrinth. I am still a novice and more often than not, I end up beached on some shoal :lol:.

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