War diary’s April 2, 1945

Personnel of the 7th Field Company, Royal Canadian Engineers (R.C.E.), reconstructing the bridge joining Terborg and Doetinchem, Netherlands, 1 April 1945.  Photographer: Dean, Michael M. Source www.collectionscanada.ca

Attack was successful

5 Cdn Fd Regt RCA
Very dull during the morning an most of the afternoon – recce parties went out again this morning – we moved at 1430 hrs to square 0077 – new locn of RHQ 007773d sheet 4003 DOETINCHEM 1/25000 – engaged an “M” tgt on an SP gun and arm’d car at 1345 –  a small fire plan was engaged at 1930 hrs and later some M.L’s in sp RHC – attack was successful with the R de M & RHC holding their objectives – amn exp 34 rpg’s.

4 Canadian Field Regiment R.C.A.
Weather – Cool with showers
Activity – At 0015 hrs the 2 IC returned from the CRA’s O Op and gave orders for another move, a long one. 4 Bde were to cut the Twenthe Canal to-day and the Regt would be prepared to suply clos support. 2 Bty was ordered to report immediately to their Bn (RRC). Recce parties at 0500 and the remainder of the Regt ready to move by 0645 hrs. During the remaining hours the picture changed again. The enemy wethdrew to the line of the Canal but as a pocket remained in DOETINCHEM we by-passed as it was a 5 Bde show. We moved at 0715 hrs and te Regt was located in VORDEN by 1330 hrs. RHQ at 025906 A 037907 B 032906 C 032950 D 032952 E 035942 F 037941. Some firing as RRC’s moved into posn for the assault, an “O” Smoke screen by 2 Bty, 3 or 4 “M” tgts and about 20 HF tgts.

Toronto Scottish Regiment (MG) CIC
10 Pl is at MR 034875 and accounted for about a dozen PW. About 1400 hrs D coy HQ moved to the edge of Doetinchem, then skirted the town as the centre was not yet cleared and took up posn at MR 005671. Cal Highrs are clearing the town and are accounting stiff opposition as the enemy have erected strong street blocks.


The Bn moved off in TCV’s followin g the Royals — we moved very slowly with numerous stops and finally arrived in a wooded area near ZUTPHEN. In the afternoon an armed recce patrol went out in the direction of ZUTPHEN to feel out the enemy and get information on the bridges over small streams and mainly a bridge over the TWENTHE CANAL. The patrol was fired on and had to return suffring two lightly  wounded casualties. During the afternoon, the Mortar Officer Captain R LEARN in search of an observation post, captured 28 Germans. At 1715 hrs. the CO went to Bde to get further orders regarding the operation of crossing the canal and on his return passed news on to the Coy Commanders.

8 Canadian Reconnaissance Regiment (14 CH)
Wheather: – Cold and raining.
At 0730 hrs RHQ began a long drawn out move. We left the town of ETTEN, and moved to 029946 near ZUTPHEN. Traffic was very heavy on the up Route, which caused all the delay. We arrived in our present position at approximately 1600 hrs. During the day “a” and “B” Squadron were probbing along the Twente Canal, trying to sieze a bridge intact, but Jerry blew them all. One in particular was blown up whein our troops were within 300 yards of it. “C” Squadron are under command of 3rd Cdn Division, who are working on our left along the IJSSEL River. Information on our Squadron is not to good, but we found out that they took at least 65 P.W.s during the course of the day, which makes a total of 90 for the days work of the Regiment. Lieut Heward I.O. has been transferred to “c” Squadron, and has been replaced by Lieut. P. Lloyd-Craig. Lieut Llooyd-Craig, has been the 7th Officer that has had this job since the Regiment came overseas. We have air personnel attached to us, but as yet this Holland whather had nog given us a change to use them. If the weather clears up we hope to have them give ZUPTHEN a dusting.

10 Cdn Armd Regt (Fort Garry Horse)
A036930 2 Apr 45. Cloudy with rain. The pursuit was in full swing. RHQ woke in the morning and found that B sqn was beyond the range of the 19 set. C sqn was halted by road blocks at Doetinchem and A sqn was following B sqns advance mopping up. RHQ and D sqn moved from harbour at 1230 hrs arriving, after numerous short halts at new harbour A036930. This harbour was a number of miles past the spot that had been chosen. Evening found B sqn on the south side of TWENTHE CANAL area A019966,  C sqn still around DOETINCHEM E987768, A sqn releived from action harboured area A026933, D sqn with RHQ, E sqn A065650.

1 Bn The Royal Regiment of Canada
The weather today was windy with occasional rain.
An “O” was held at 0030 hrs and warning orders given.
We changed Zone “E” Time – an advance of one hr at 0200 hrs.
The Bn moved off at 0600 hrs to approach the TWENTHE CANAL and reached assembly area at MR 036924 at 1100 hrs.

 The “O” Gp for the canal crossing was held at 1700 hrs.

B Coy moved to remnants of bridge at MR 037975 to see if crossing there was possible, but reported the undertaking impossible. At 1830 hrs A Coy was to cross in 18 man MIII assaults boats followed by D, C and B Coys quickly followed to complete Phase I.  Phase II then started and coy areas were increased to a firm bridghead in area of MR 023975.
Ps O W taken were mostly enemy engrs who were preparing posns for enemy inf formations who did not arrive in time to stop this successful op.
D Coy of th RHLI crossed at 2200 hrs and moved in to strengthen our left flank.

15 OR Rfts were received today and alloted as follows: HQ Coy – 1, A Coy – 5, B Coy – 1, C Coy – 5, D Coy – 3.

43rd Reconnaissance Regiment
C Sqn U/C 214 Bde to recce ahead of advance into NE Holland. Axis to be AALTEN 2070-LITCHENVOORDE 1977-BELTRUM 1986-GEESTEREN 1794-DIPENHEIM 1977-GOOR 2104. 0630 C Sqn move out from SINDEREN 1268, to join Bde column behind Sqn of Royals. Progress slow, delayed by transport of Guards Armd Div. Route changed to RUURLO 1188 -BORCULO 1691. More delays. 129 Bde transport. 1100 Royals enter BORCULO, but held up by mines. 12 Tp sent forward to clear mines. Advance continued via GEESTEREN and onto original axis. 1430 Royals lose vehicle to bazooka fire at DIPENHEIM. 12 Tp deployed and discover firmly established enemy. Vanguard attacked through 12 Tp’s firm base and clear village in 1 hour. 1830 C Sqn ordered to protect left flank of Bde. Scout Tps deployed to cover aproaches to GEESTEREN and GELSELAAR Remainder of Regt continue to cover left flank of Div. B Sqn ordered to concentrate and to be U/C of 8 Armd Bde from first light. 

Auteur: Jan Braakman

Jan Braakman is journalist en schrijver. Hij publiceert regelmatig korte biografische schetsen van geallieerde soldaten die in Nederland gesneuveld of begraven zijn.

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