First to answer the call

15 young men from Quesnel enlisted one week after war was declared in 1939

15 young men from Quesnel enlisted one week after war was declared in 1939.

This group of 15 young men from Quesnel joined the army voluntarily a week after the Second World War was declared.

They gave five years of their life for their country and served in the front lines of Italy and Europe. Two of them did not return – Joker Lunn and Wilf Beaman. Several were wounded which affected them the rest of their lives. Most of them are gone now but Quesnel honours and respects them all.

This group joined so fast, they were in Prince Rupert for six months before they had uniforms. They were accused of not joining up because they were in civilian clothes.

After this initial group mustered into the military, they were followed by at least 100 Quesnel and area young men of which 19 gave their lives for the country.

Quesnel and community was very close knit with a population of about 500 when war was declared. I was only 16 at the time but knew everyone in town and the community. I was delivering the Vancouver Sun and had 33 customers, 30 in downtown Quesnel and three in West Quesnel. The paper was 60 cents a month. When I was old enough I joined the RCAF and served in England in Bomber Command.

– submitted by Tom Moffat

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