April 2020 marked the 75th anniversary of the liberation of prisoners of war during World War II.
Approximately 9,000 Canadian servicemen were captured by the enemy and held as prisoners of war during the war. Among them were three residents of the Foothills: Winston Parker, Donald Hall and Felix Noel. Winston and Donald served with the Royal Canadian Air Force and were captured after their respective aircrafts were shot down over occupied territory. Felix served with the Royal Canadian Army and was captured during the Dieppe Raid. All three men endured three years of unimaginable suffering first in the camps and then on heartless marches until their liberation in April of 1945.
We honour these men, and their families, by sharing their powerful stories of survival. Click their names below to read their stories.
The Okotoks Museum and Archives gratefully acknowledges the support of the following individuals and organizations for helping to share these stories:
- The Salmon Arm Museum at R.J. Haney Heritage Village, Salmon Arm, B.C. for providing access to Felix and Kay Noel’s fonds.
- Elaine Taylor Thomas, author of “Saddles and Service Winston Parker’s Story.”
- The Donald Hall family for donating their father’s memoirs to the Okotoks Archives.
- Ian Porter, grandson of Geoffrey ‘Pop’ Porter, for access to his memoirs.