A WELL-DESERVED HONOUR
Memories of a life spent in service to his country
Born July 2, 1939, and hoping to escape a working class future, I enlisted in the army at age 18. Not yet understanding the army philosophy of “never volunteer,” I volunteered for everything, including advanced combat training and an overseas posting. Within a year, I was posted to Singapore and saw combat in the jungles of Malaya, during the Malayan Emergency and once in Borneo, at the start of the Borneo Confrontation. I was later posted to South China and based in Kowloon and Hong Kong with tours of duty in the New Territories for pa- trolling the Chinese border. For those tours of duty, I proudly wear the General Service Medal (GSM Malaya), General Service Medal (GSM Borneo), and the South Asia Service Medal (SASM).
Following completion of the seven-year active commitment, and relocation, I joined the Canadian Armed Forces Reserve, where I served until the age of 60. During my service with the Canadian Armed Forces, I received a Queen’s Commission, and on completion of my service held the rank of captain, in training systems command. For my service with the Canadian Armed Forces, I received the Canadian Decoration (CD) and later the rosette addition.
While proud of previous military awards, I was even more proud, and surprised, when, 50 years after the event, and living a quiet retired life in Keswick, Ont., I received a phone call from the Malaysian consulate. I was advised that the current King of Malaysia had ordered a special medal to be cast to show his country’s deep appreciation for the service and deeds performed by certain foreign military personnel, which resulted in Malaysia’s independence. My name appeared on that list. A few days later, a small leather box arrived containing the Pingat Jasa Malaysia (PJM) medal from Malaysia, a small brass plaque and a letter of gratitude for services rendered.
I now live in the retirement community of Elliot Lake, Ont., with my memories from a life of service to my country.
Above: Reg enlisted at 18. Left: Reg as a commissioned officer in the Canadian Armed Forces.