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Name: Winslow Earl Oikle Service Number: F/96045 Rank: Corporal Force: Army Unit: 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion, R.C.I.C Date of Birth: April 21, 1923 Place of Birth: Cape Sable Island, NS Date of Enlistment: September 30, 1941 Place of Enlistment: Yarmouth, NS Address at Enlistment: Yarmouth North, NS Age at Enlistment: 19 Height: 5 feet, 6 inches Complexion: Fair Eyes: Hazel Hair: Brown Weight: 136 lbs Trade: Auto Mechanic (3 years) Marital Status: Single Religion: Baptist Next of Kin: Margaret Oikle (Sister) Yarmouth North, NS Date of Death: June 7, 1944 Age at Death: 22 Memorial: Bayeux Memorial, Normandy, France Panel Reference: Panel 27, Column 2. (Not listed on the Yarmouth War Memorial) Commemorated on Page 407 of the Second World War Book of Remembrance. Displayed in the Memorial Chamber of the Peace Tower in Ottawa on August 31 Winslow was the son of Winslow Livingston and Amy Oikle of Cape Sable Island, Nova Scotia. He was the brother of Donald (Roseway Digby Co., NS), Forrest (Mass. US), George (Dorchester, Mass., US), Foreman (Mass. US), Margaret Vera (Yarmouth and Halifax), Beatrice (Mrs. Lennox, Pubnico, Yarmouth Co., NS), Anna (Mrs. Smith, Clam Point, Cape Sable Island), Dorothy (Mrs. Robbins, Pleasant Lake, Yarmouth Co., NS and East Lynn, Mass. US) He left school at the age of fifteen completing grade 8 and entered a three year auto mechanic apprenticeship. Born in Clam Point, Cape Sable Island, he moved to Yarmouth in 1938 where he remained until the time of his enlistment. He was employed as a mechanic and in the two months prior to enlistment he worked as a general helper at the Yarmouth Dairy. He completed his basic training at C.A.B.T.C. No. 60 at Yarmouth, NS between October 29, 1941 and January 15, 1942 and was then posted to Woodstock, Ontario for a Driver Mechanic course. Upon completion he was transferred to Petawawa, Ontario. On November 26, 1942 he was transferred to the 1st Paratroop Battalion at Fort Benning Georgia in the US. Having completed his course in Packing instruction and Jumping he qualified as a Parachutist on December 26, 1943. On January 15, 1943 he qualified as a Acting Corporal. He remained at Fort Benning until April 15, 1943 when he reported to Shilo, Camp, Manitoba. On June 8, 1943 he was granted embarkation leave until June 15, 1943. He left Canada on July 23, 1943 and arrived in the United Kingdom on July 28, 1943 and was assigned to the Airborne Forces. On June 6th, 1944 he was with the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion dropped into Normandy as part of D- Day. Just before midnight on June 5, 1944 his company took off in 12 Albemarles from Harwell Airfield. C Company would lead a clandestine operation to parachute into Varaville while a Mosquito fighter-bomber conducted a night strafing raid to help the soldiers land undetected by the enemy. The platoon was ordered to conduct a direct assault on the trench position and the trench’s anti-tank gun position. There was to be no sleep for the men as they made ground throughout the early hours towards Varaville, a town where the Germans were dug in, to seize the depot. During the jump, material and men had been widely dispersed, leaving them only with light arms. By six o’clock on the morning of 6 June, Corporal Oikle was with Private Leslie Abram Neufeld at Château Varaville, and using the only arms they had available, a PIAT gun, fired against the enemy. Unfortunately, the projectile fell short. The enemy retaliated with a high explosive shrapnel shell which penetrated the château’s wall and set off Corporal Oikle’s remaining PIAT bombs. Both Corporal Oikle and Private Neufeld were killed instantly, buried beneath a pile of masonry. Among his belongings returned to Corporal Oikle’s family was a New Testament and a Prayer Book. His body was never recovered. His name is listed on the Bayeux Memorial, Normandy. Winslow Earl Oikle served in Canada between September 30, 1941 and July 23, 1943; in the United Kingdom Between July 24, 1943 and June 5, 1944; and in (Western Europe) Normandy Between June 6, 1944 and June 7, 1944. Sources and Information: Commonwealth War Graves Commission Veterans Affairs Canada Library and Archives Canada Private Leslie Abram Neufeld, 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion
Winslow Earl Oikle
Winslow holding a lamp made from a shell casing