Meet Irene Haslam, the wife of a British Veteran
Irene was born in Birmingham England. Irene shared her experiences of living in England during World War 2 with her family. During an air raid, Irene and her mother were about to enter the air raid shelter when a German airplane flew over. Irene could see the face of the soldier and his gun. She pushed her mother into the shelter and jumped in behind her before hearing gun fire. Irene was also an ambulance attendant with St. John’s Ambulance during the war.
Irene met her husband Charlie on the train. The conductor sat Irene and her 2 friends in the train car with all the solders. Charlie, in his uniform, took Irene’s address off her suitcase and wrote to her. This when she meets the love of her life. Irene and Charlie married in 1950 in Wigan Lancashire, England.
Charlie was a munitions truck driver during the war. After the war, he continued as a Peacekeeper. He served in Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Singapore, during the War of the Running Dogs. While he was in Singapore, the Singapore government wanted him to stay as a police officer. He was discouraged to do this and encouraged to go to Canada. The family moved to Canada in 1953, settling in Sarnia as there was an aunt who could help support a young family with a 6-week-old child. They arrived in Canada with $3 in their pockets. Irene has stated it was tough start, but their life was good.
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