The Interim (Post WWII) Provost Force - 1946
Photo of the Interim post WWII Provost Force.
spacer Shown above in 1946, at the C Pro C Training center (A-32) in camp Borden, Ontario, are 69 members of the 117 man Interim Provost Force selected out of the 450 applicants from the various units of the Canadian Provost Corps during WWII. The majority of the members selected were required to take a reduction in rank, down several levels from their wartime status, in order to facilitate the approved post war establishment for the Canadian Provost Corps. The nucleus of this group formed No. 6 Provost Company who were subsequently dispersed across Canada to form Provost Sections.

spacer Over sixty years later, former member of the Canadian Provost Corps and a member of this select group of individuals, retired Major Arthur B. (Robbie) Robertson, provided the photo along with the names of most of his former colleagues, a reflection of his exceptional powers of recall. Robbie added:
  • "during this period, 12 Service Detention Barracks (SDB), 6 Provost Company and the Canadian Provost Corps School were all co-located at Camp Borden, ON. 12 SDB was a Military Prison during WWII and after the war, the long term inmates who were serving time for murder, rape, black marketing etc; were all transferred to civil custody to complete their sentences. The candidates on the first SP Gp1 course lived, learned, slept and ate in the vacated space in the Detention Barracks. Each candidate was allocated a cell, with the door removed."
spacer Lieutenant Colonel (retired) JD (Jim) Lumsden, a post WWII member of the Canadian Provost Corps, recalls being involved in a similar transfer of the long term inmates from the former Military Prison, 12 SDB to the civilian institutions in the early fifties. He states:
  • "With the development of 25 Brigade for Korea in 1950 and 27 Brigade in 1951 for Europe, 12 SDB flourished once again in that capacity. I can recall that in the Fall of 1952 there was a full wing (36 cells) which were referred to as Service Convicts. They ranged anywhere from a guy who held up the paymaster in Korea and nabbed the payroll, to a guy convicted of murder and had been sentenced to death. He was subsequently transferred to Winnipeg, his home province, and his sentenced was subsequently commuted to life, and;
  • I remember taking an escort with four convicts on transfer to Guelph Reformatory (which in those days was the Big House in Ontario). I can tell you that these guys were shocked when they suddenly realized the relatively reasonable treatment they received in Borden compared to their new digs in Guelph."
spacer Members identified in the photo to-date are (from left to right):
front row - Bob Hodges, John De Cou, Ed Rae, Unknown, Rod McPhail, Sgt-Maj AE (Tony) McAskill, Sgt-Maj Howie Rollins, RSM Art Bird, Major Andrew (Andy) Ritchie, Capt QE (Joe) Lawson, Sgt-Maj George Shepherd, Al Woods, Art Heymans, Unknown And Unknown.
2nd row - Ron Currie, Art Walker, Don Watts, Herb Reynett, Terry Foster, John Campbell, Ed Cunningham, Gerry Delaney, Roy Johnson, Bob Marshall, Ken Mason, Unknown, Gord Evans, Unknown and Unknown
3rd row - Unknown, Jim McConnery, H. (Red) Forrister, Laurie Paulus, Lars Larson, Bill Van Horne, Bill Deer, Hank Cadorette, Harry Woodley, McDonnell, Unknown, Vic Auburn and Unknown
4th row - Unknown, Sinott, Risser, Unknown, Murphy, Bill Patterson, Merle Shantz, Unknown, Art McKenzie, Mel Decker, Unknown, Unknown, Jim Hie, Unknown, and Robbie Robertson
5th row - Unknown, McCallum, Frank Brennan, H.H. Brown, Unknown, Unknown, Unknown, Unknown, and Unknown.
There were some members of the Interim Force who; for one reason or another, were not in the photo. Former member of this Force, retired CWO Charlie Douglas advises that along with himself, the following were not included: Larry Adams, Bill Dzaman and R. Dzaman; among others who he can not recall at this point in time.

Charlie also advises that some of the members of the Interim Force later transferred out of the C Pro C and went on to have very successful careers in other Corps; namely:
  • Sinott transferred to the Medical Corps (RCAMC) eventually serving in Korea where he was decorated for his service above and beyond the call of duty.
  • Murphy transferred to the RCCS, and;
  • The unidentified member on the left of Bill Deer in the third row, subsequently went into the Pay Corps (RCAPC) where he retired in the rank of major.
The Web Master acknowledges the assistance of all those who contributed to the identification of the Old Sweats in the above photo of the Interim Provost Force following WWII; in particular: JD (Jim) Lumsden, AB (Robbie Robertson and Charlie Douglas.

Photo of the Vancouver, BC Provost Section, No. 6 Provost Company. The photo on the left, taken on the 11th November 1946, depicts members of the Vancouver Provost section, No. 6 Provost Company as they are preparing to participate in the local Remembrance Day ceremonies.

From left to right are: Sgt Gord Evans, Privates Bill Van Horne (Major CAPC, retired) and Lars, Larson, LCpl Ed Cunningham (retired CWO), Corporal Bob Marshall (retired Ssgt) and Privates Harry Woodley and Pte Robbie Robertson (retired Major).

Click here to email the Web Master if you recognize anyone in the top photo. (The photo and related caption were provided by former member of the Canadian Provost Corps, Arthur (Robbie) Robertson, shown on the extreme right in the photo on the left.)
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