Published by the Hong Kong Veterans Commemorative Association, Beyond the Call is the story of thirty-three members of the Royal Canadian Corps of Signals. These men were sent to Hong Kong as part of “C” Force, the Canadian contingent of 2000 soldiers dispatched to bolster the British colony’s garrison in October, 1941.
Applying the results of four years of in depth research, including interviews with seven surviving Hong Kong Signal Corps veterans, Midland, Ontario author Burke Penny chronicles the lives of the Signallers. We follow them from the days in Canada when they joined up, through their training and trip to Hong Kong, participation in the battle against Japanese forces, their subsequent incarceration in prisoner of war camps, and finally the trip home after the war for the twenty-four who survived. “I wanted the book to focus on the men themselves with the Hong Kong battle and the POW camps as the broader backdrop to their stories,” says Penny. An often forgotten component in previous books about Hong Kong, the impact on the soldiers’ families back in Canada, provides an ongoing counterpoint to the trials faced by the men overseas.
Beyond the Call was officially released on August 14th at the Hong Kong Veterans Commemorative Association national convention in Ottawa. The unveiling of a memorial wall honouring all members of “C” Force took place the following day. Proceeds from the sale of the book will go towards the costs of the memorial. Beyond the Call is available at http://www.hkvca.ca.
Beyond the Call: Royal Canadian Corps of Signals, Brigade Headquarters, “C” Force, Hong Kong and Japan, 1941-1945, by D. Burke Penny
Published by the Hong Kong Veterans Commemorative Association
403 pages, trade paperback; $30.00
For information about Beyond the Call, contact:
D. Burke Penny
Mundys Bay Store has copies for sale