War Records



    Biography of William Martyn Clarke (September 4, 1921-April 3, 2017)

    William (Bill) Clarke was born in Port Hope, Ontario on September 4th, 1921.  He spent his early years in St Thomas, Ontario before joining the war effort.

    Bill enlisted in the Royal Canadian Air Force on April 20th, 1943 and began by training at seven stations in Canada as a radio operator.  He then sailed from Halifax to Greenock, Scotland aboard the Nieuw Amsterdam.  He transferred to the Royal Air Force on September 9th, 1944 working as a radar mechanic at the rank of Leading Aircraftman.  He served at nine overseas stations with his longest duty in Oban, Scotland.  Bill had vivid memories of VE Day in London joining the massive crowd to see the King and Queen on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.  He was repatriated in Torquay, England, coincidentally the birthplace of his mother.  He returned to Halifax aboard the Scythia, having left Liverpool on January 25, 1946.  Bill was officially demobilized in Toronto that February.

    After the war Bill trained as a pharmacist at the Ontario College of Pharmacy and went on to work in drug stores in St Thomas and Sarnia before moving to Stratford in 1963.  He worked at several pharmacies in Stratford before joining the staff of the Stratford General Hospital, originally as its sole pharmacist and later as the head pharmacist responsible for nuclear medicine materials.