Your first day

Discussion in 'General' started by mosin_nagant, Mar 5, 2009.

  1. mosin_nagant

    mosin_nagant Member

    This question is being asked to those who have previously fought in the War, or even experienced the war. What was your first day in battle like? Im a 17-year old who is really interested in the mentalilty of an individual who fought in the war.

    Also if you may have been conscripted to war for a reason, how did that make you feel, leaving your wife/children?

    Thanks,
    Jills
     
  2. Ron Goldstein

    Ron Goldstein WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran Patron

    Jills
    Your first day
    This question is being asked to those who have previously fought in the War, or even experienced the war. What was your first day in battle like? Im a 17-year old who is really interested in the mentalilty of an individual who fought in the war.
    Also if you may have been conscripted to war for a reason, how did that make you feel, leaving your wife/children?
    Thanks,
    Jills

    I'm afraid your question is too vague to get a proper answer, from me, anyway, but I'll have a shot at trying to explain.

    How do you define going into battle ?

    I arrived in North Africa in April 1943 and shortly after joined my unit with whom I was to stay until December '44. I was a wireless op in a Light Ack Ack unit that was attached to an Infantry Div and wherever that Div went, so went I, usually stuck in the back of a wireless truck and sharing, to some extent, all the enemy rubbish that was thrown at us.

    I spent a very miserable month at Cassino, living in conditions that were very rough and resulting in my being shipped back South to cure a bad case of Impetigo.

    When my mob was disbanded I was re-trained as a "Tankie" and shortly after found myself in the line in an apology for a tank and being shot at on a regular basis.

    Is this what you mean by being in battle ?

    Let's be brutally honest.

    Once the die was cast I was in a unit where almost everybody shared the same risks and we truly did not know whether or not we would survive to see the end of each day.

    You ask "What was our mentality like" I would ask you in turn how do you think your own mentality would have been if you had been placed in the same circumstance ?

    As with other threads I have posted on, I emphasise that my views on this or any other subject are purely my own and other may provide a completely different answer.

    Finally, in answer to the second part of your question, at the age of nineteen, when I was called up I was still unmarried.

    Ron
     
  3. Tom Canning

    Tom Canning WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Mosin Nagant -

    As Ron says

    - difficult to answer - but really apprehension of the ability to survive - then being too busy to worry about it - then relief and thankfulness that you actually did survive - seems to be how the first day went by -everyday had the same apprehensions - always the waiting to go in - followed by a resignation that if it happens there's not a lot you can do about it.

    You just get on with it this is the job you have to do and this is why you were called to do that job - it doesn't change whether it be the first day - or all the others......it's never good......we can only be grateful to survive and rejoin our families......

    Cheers
     
  4. Niccar

    Niccar WW2 Veteran WW2 Veteran

    Hi jills
    I never left a wife because I was your age when I first went into the line every bullet shell mortar or bomb you imagine has your name on it nerves taught as banjo strings
    hearing so acute you could hear the proverbial five pound note drop five miles away
    after a while as Tom says you accept the inevitable theres nothing you can do about it and if the next one has your name on it so be it but dont let anyone ever tell you they went into battle and felt brave I personally was shitscared most of the time
    regards niccar
     
  5. mosin_nagant

    mosin_nagant Member

    If it was WWII right now, it shard to imagine that I would have to go to battle... the weird thing is that i look like i am in grade 6 or so. I currently live in Canada and my parents are in the urge to move to the United States. While we were applying for our citizenship, the US embassy asked my brother who was nineteen to sign a sheet saying that if the US ever went into war, my brother would have to enter.

    Thank you

    Jills
     

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