This web site is dedicated to my father.
Major Maurice A. Parker
Commanding Officer, "D" Company, of the Royal Rifles of Canada,
and to the brave men and women who fought a long ago nearly forgotten battle for
the Island of Hong Kong.It was a battle that some say should never have been
fought, but it was. Now....it should never be forgotten.
|My father, Major M.A. Parker, from Quebec City, Quebec, was
the Commanding Officer of "D" Company, The Royal Rifles of
This web site is in his honour.
D" Coy, RR of C march past having taken the "stick" that day.
How this project began:
|Hear the March Of The Royal Rifles of Canada
It may take a while to load but it's worth the wait.
Last updated , December 17, 2012
On December 7, 1941, the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor. That same day, 6
hours later, at 08:00 hrs, they attacked the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong.
The world took little notice of that "incident". For those of us who had a family
member, or in many cases family members or friends in mortal danger, it was a
different matter. It was a day never to be forgotten.
The saga of that long ago battle needs to be told. The defenders of Hong Kong
fought a valiant fight and they need to be honoured. It was a hopeless effort from
the beginning but they fought on anyway. They fought, they were wounded, and
they died. After 18 long cruel days of non-stop struggle they were finally captured
on Christmas Day, 1941. Those who survived began a stint in hell that would last
for 44 months
When I was in high school, my English Literature teacher assigned the class the
task of writing an essay on one of our personal heroes. We were to write about
what he or she did, when, where, why and how what he or she did had impacted
on history. I had just finished reading a book about General George S. Patton, the
U.S. Tank Commander who had landed in Sicily and cut a swath through the
German defenses all the way to Berlin. I chose to write about him.
I got a pretty good mark for my effort, and a note from my teacher saying, "Good
work. Why did you choose Patton? You should have looked a little closer to
home." At that time I didn't understand what he meant. I was only when I got a
little older, and a wee bit wiser, that I understood his message. I should have
written about my Dad.
It dawned on me that this gentle, shy, ordinary down-to-earth man who was my
Father and whom I saw every day had done some extraordinary things in his life.
He had fought in the Battle of Hong Kong and survived the hardship of 44 months
of captivity at the hands of the Japanese in WWII. Then he had come home and
continued to raise a family. He was an ordinary man who had done extraordinary
things under extraordinary circumstances. Is that not the essence of a hero?
It was not until after my Mother died in 1998 and I came into
possession of his memorabilia that I began to put together this account of the things
he endured. It is a story of great courage and great endurance. It is the story of my
Dad and of the men with whom he fought and suffered. Dad died on August 10,
1985. I'm sorry I took so long to get started on this "essay". I should have written
about my Dad in the first place. To me he is a bigger hero than George S. Patton.
The teacher who told me to look a little closer to home for my hero was Major A.
A. MacMillan, M.I.D., the best teacher I ever had. In December 1941 he was a
Lieutenant in "D" Company of The Royal Rifles of Canada. He had served with
Dad and endured the same hardships in Hong Kong. He has gone now, but I hope
if he were to read this he would give me an “A”, at least for effort.