Another veteran of the Falaise Pocket, Bill Wolosyn of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada, passed away in March 2015. Here is a link to his obituary:
Bill Wolosyn was wounded in St. Lambert on August 20, 1944, while helping my father and two others carry a badly burned Sherman tank driver to a first aid post. Here are descriptions of what happened, in their own words, from the Argylls' book, "Black Yesterdays":
Reminiscence. Pte. Art Bridge 15 Platoon, C Coy:
Shortly after daybreak [on August 20] all hell broke loose. It began when an A.P. [armour piercing] shall smashed into the Sherman we had recently welcomed among us. Those of the crew who could, bailed out. The co-driver's hatch was blocked by the tank's 75mm gun and as the shell had hit right beside him, it was apparent that he had been hurt. Once again George Mitchell came to the rescue. He and Cpl. Holmes climbed up on the tank and somehow managed to traverse the turret so that the hatch was clear. They opened the hatch and with some help we were able to pull the injured tanker out. All this time, there was shooting from everywhere, as this was the start of a desperate German charge to get through St. Lambert and out of the pocket.
C.S.M. Mitchell told us to take the injured man to the R.A.P. [aid post] which was at the other end of town. Having no stretcher, we found a door that had been blown off the house, put two rifles under it, the wounded man on top and four of us, one on each corner, headed the 150 yards or so to the R.A.P. … Unfortunately, we never made it to the R.A.P. because the Germans were attacking that end of town as well. With about 50 yards to go, a machine gun opened up on us and to the stretcher bearers were hit, so we had to take to the ditch. The enemy continued to attack for what seemed like hours, but tanks of the South Albertas were well cited and were able to prevent them from overwhelming us. Many Germans were killed or wounded as they try to swarm their way through -- many also surrendered when they realized they couldn't get through. We were not able to get back to the wounded tank man…
A terrible thing … an armour piercing shell went right to the front of that tank, just beside the co-driver, and everybody bailed out except this court co-driver, because he couldn't get out because … he was knocked out with the shot … and the gun was right over his hatch, and nobody could open the hatch because the gun was in the way. And the crew had bailed out. So George Mitchell and Holmes climbed up on that tank and turned the gun around, lifted up the hatch, and two or three of us got up and pulled that co-driver out. He was alive, but the flesh on his face was just cooked. It was just absolutely cooked. He was unconscious. So we stuck him on an improvised stretcher. We got a door off one of the houses and put a rifle under each end. My rifle was one of them. And there was first aid post just down the other end of town, so we are carrying this poor follow down to first aid, and before we got there, this counter-attack came in and two of the guys that were helping me carry this stretcher got hit with rifle fire, or machine gun fire. So we couldn't carry him any further, we had to leave that poor fellow. I think he died …
Reminiscence. Pte. Bill Wolosyn. 14 Platoon, C Coy:
While we were in St. Lambert a Tiger came up the road, there was an SAR [South Alberta Regiment] tank behind the house we were in. We told them about the Tiger and the driver pulled the tank around. It [the Sherman] was hit. Mitchell pulled the driver out of the tank. Cpl. Bill Hunter and I carried the driver down the street and that's when I got hit close to our RAP. I was hit in the thigh by a bullet, it went in between the artery and the bone …
Lest we forget.