Elwood Vint's Story

Nov 14.jpgElwood Vint is thankful he served in the Royal Canadian Air Force as it resulted in him qualifying for the Veteran Affairs funding through CNIB which enabled him to read again.

"The reception I received from CNIB made me feel comfortable. I really enjoyed seeing photographs again," said the 95-year-old Brandon resident. 

Vint, who developed macular degeneration in his later years, was unable to read due to the condition. After a couple of sessions with Brenda Trommelen, a CNIB Service Coordination Specialist, he received a CCTV (which helps to magnify books and newspapers), Daisy Reader, talking clock and sunglasses at no cost to him through funding from Veteran Affairs to CNIB.

His daughter suggested he go to CNIB. Before this, Vint had no idea what services CNIB provided. What he discovered delighted him.

"My wife used to read to me but now I can read myself. Brenda made sure I knew how to use all the devices I received," said the veteran.

He joined the air force in December of 1941 at the age of 20. In 1942, he did his basic training. Then studied to become an Airframe Mechanic.

From 1943 to 1944 he was sent to the Queen Charlotte Islands where he serviced the sea planes that patrolled for Japanese submarines setting off depth charges.

But while he served he worried about home. "I was always concerned that I was needed at home as my father was alone on the farm."

When asked about what he saw in the war he laughs. "Lots of water and oil slicks." He goes on. "It was pretty exciting, and I experienced a lot of comradeship but at times it was frightening."

At the end of that year, the night before his squadron was to fly back to Canada to Greenwood, Nova Scotia, Vint was removed from the flight because he had enlisted in Vancouver. The next day that plane crashed in the mountains and almost all of his squadron was killed.

Upon returning to Canada he later met and married his wife Audrey in 1955 and had three children. Shortly after that took over his father's cattle and grain farm just south of Brandon.

Today one of his son's runs the farm. Elwood and his wife help out as much as they can.

Although the time he spent on the islands during the war is long gone he still has fond memories.

"I am very proud to have served in the Royal Canadian Air Force."