BC’s oldest stamp club, operating since 1919
A BC Philatelic Society member follows in the
WWII footsteps of his father and uncle
Mike’s Adventures in Europe
© by Mike Strachan *
Web page updated August 12, 2008 | Webmaster: Bob Ingraham**
In mid-April, 2008, I embarked on an extended driving/walking tour in Europe, starting with a brief stay in Britain and then taking a ferry to Normandy where I began a sort of pilgrimage, visiting the areas where both my father and my uncle fought with Canadian regiments in the Second World War. They both took part in the initial D-Day invasion of Normandy.
Throughout my journey, I kept a journal of my daily activities and the sights I saw, linking them with my father's and uncle's stories. Click on the following links to join me in my adventures, starting 16 April 2008 from England:
- 1H — First Hussars
- QOR — Queen’s Own Rifles
- SNCF — Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Français (French National Railways)
- VVV — Dutch tourism organization
Mike based his military trek through Western Europe on four books, all of which are available through your public library or from sellers on-line at the Advanced Book Exchange (ABE.com):
For the First Hussars
For the Queen's Own Rifles of Canada
- A History of the First Hussars Regiment 1856-1945, by Lt. Foster M. Stark et al., Hunter Printing, London Ont., 1951.
- The Royal Canadian Armoured Corps — An Illustrated History, by John K. Marteinson and Michael R. McNorgan, Royal Canadian Armoured Corps Association, 2000.
- Canadians: A Battalion at War (Canadians in the Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1940-1945), by Roy J. Whitsed, Burlington Books, 1996.
- Battle Diary: From D-Day and Normandy to the Zuider Zee and VE, by Charles Cromwell Martin with Roy Whitsed, Dundurn Press, Toronto, 2002.
Mike took advantage of his travel experiences in Europe to write a useful article intended for travellers in France, Belgium & Germany and titled…wait for it…"Tips for Travellers
in France, Holland, Belgium & Germany".
* Mike Strachan is former Treasurer of the BC Phil Philatelic Society, and has served as the Society’s auctioneer and as chair of the national-level VANPEX philatelic exhibition. He lives in Vancouver.
** Mike Strachan and the webmaster, Bob Ingraham, share interests in both philately and the Second World War, and history in general. If you enjoy reading about Mike’s adventures in Europe, you might also enjoy learning about some more recent history, that of the Vietnam War, as presented in Bob’s web site, A Navy corpsman goes to war — with 3/1 in Vietnam. Bob served with the U.S. Marines in Vietnam in 1966.