Tuesday, 10 November 2009


People in Crowsnest Pass and across our nation will be silent for a few moments tomorrow remembering the sacrifices selflessly given by our soldiers, past and present, in order that we might live our lives in a peaceful and just society. Speeches will be made and stories will be told in remembrance and respect. Here is one story. A story that was never told to me. A story I only became aware of just a year or so ago.

Copied from the website of the Saskatoon Light Infantry

On August 3rd, 1943, the Edmonton Regiment, with under command 1 Platoon M.M.G. (2 Cdn. Inf. Sp. Gp.) (Sask.L.I.) was given the task of capturing a hill feature north of REGALBUTO.

The country to be crossed precluded the use of mechanical transport and supplies, ammunition, and heavy weapons had to be carried on mules.

At daylight, 4 Aug., the mules carrying the weapons and ammunition for the Platoon of M.M.G.'s came under enemy Mortar and M/M.G. fire; many of the mules were killed and most of the remainder dispersed.

While the platoon was being with drawn to cover to reorganize Cpl. Taje, in the face of heavy enemy fire, made his way to the guns and removed the locks, thus rendering them valueless.

Cpl. Taje was then unable to find his own Platoon and so reported to the Edmn. R. On arrival there he was informed that two enemy M.G. emplacements were holding up the advance.

Cpl. Taje returned to the location where the mules had been killed, despite the enemy fire which was being brought down, collected the two guns and some ammunition which he placed in position to engage the enemy. This undertaking required about four hours.

Cpl. Taje then engaged both enemy M.G. emplacements preventing the enemy from firing and enabling the Edmonton Regiment to advance and silence the posts.

Cpl. Taje. accomplished this feat single-handed and with complete disregard for his personal safety. His courage and determination under fire were an inspiration to all ranks taking part in this action.

Dad never talked about the war nor his role in it. Like other baby boomers, I grew up watching Audie Murphy, John Wayne and others take on the Nazis in guts and glory movies about World War II and found it strange that Dad didn't revel in the glory of all he had to have experienced. When talk turned to the latest war movie Dad would only say "don't believe that American s***t. It's not true."

Over the years I began to get a sense of why Dad wouldn't speak of the war, mostly through little snippets of events blurted out after he sampled some of the finest red wines sold by the ALCB. Tiny bits of the horrors eating at his conscience would show themselves in his wine induced, uncontrolled speech. Anything Dad could have been proud of was destroyed by what circumstance forced him to do and witness.
Well Dad and the thousands like him that sacrificed their youth and piece of mind deserve to be honoured. They are heroes. They fought and survived. They came back to raise a new generation with a standard of living they could not have dreamed possible. With all those that gave their lives for us they deserve our undying respect.


  1. http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=2208253

  2. I remember every year Dad would take his Medals out of his Laura Secord box Remove the ribbon, polish them up and painstakingly re-stitch the his Awards and His Decoration and attend services. One year he asked me what Remembrance was about and my reply was to remeber all the war heros. He diss-aproved of my statement sayying i twas about "remembering our fallen soldiers". 30 years later, I still beleive that they all were heroes, his story as well as thousands of others must be told and remembered. Dad never did talk about his experiences, he did however write many of them down so his children and his grand chilldren and as long as we keep his stories alive we will never forget. Every Year Thanks to Frances I'm able to read his stories and get a small glimmer of his life. His Awards and Decorataion are still taken out of the same Laura Secord box and carried to Remeberance Services however they are court mounted just like wanted to do some day.

    With the passing of every year it is the responsibility of the children of all who served to keep their memories allive through the generations to follow.
    Robert Taje

  3. Hey Robbie...sorry I never published this sooner. Don't know how I missed it. The report of a post needing to be published never showed up in my mail box.

  4. Gary, I knew the short version of this story when I about 12, and it is also in a couple of the History Books about the last war. In the books it is only a couple of lines. Other stories he did tell related to hungry people including kids, in italy, france, holland and germany, and how often they (Canadian Soldiers) would give up their rations so the kids could eat. It was Micheal who found the Official Record and I am glad he did. Paulette has it printed nicely and framed in her house. Next month should not be the only time we should remember he was only one of thousands with stories, or memories like this and we should honor and remember them, and thank those are now taking on the task, and are willing to endure the same horrors for all of us .