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TOPIC: MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A.
#556
MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A. 7 Years, 9 Months ago  
Sad to post the passing of our Honourary Colonel, LIEUTENANT-GENERAL DUNCAN A. MCALPINE, CD, CMM, yesterday in Florida. Further news on arrangements will be communicated as it becomes available.


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#558
Re:MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A. 7 Years, 9 Months ago  
Duncan joined The Black Watch (RHR) of Canada during WWII. After the war he joined 1st Canadian Highland Battalion as a company commander in Germany, and he subsequently served as a company commander in 1st Battalion, RHC in Camp Aldershot, NS.

Duncan assumed command of 2nd Battalion, RHC in West Germany in 1963. He continued in command when 2nd Battalion returned to Gagetown, NB in 1965 and when it deployed to Cyprus in 1966.

Between tours at NDHQ Duncan commanded the Combat Training Centre in CFB Gagetown in 1970, and Canada’s military contingent to the International Commission for Control and Supervision in Viet Nam in 1973.
Duncan was predeceased by his wife Bonnie in October 2003. He is survived by daughter Lynn and sons Bruce, Keith and Craig as well as several grandchildren.

See further down for funeral details.


R.I.P.
NEMO ME IMPUNE LACESSIT
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#559
Re:MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A. 7 Years, 9 Months ago  
Rest in Peace our friend you were without doubt the best CO and representative the Regiment has ever had.
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#560
Re:MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A. 7 Years, 9 Months ago  
Although I served in the First and did not know him personnally my older brother Lester served under his command in Germany and Gagetown and told me all about this CO. How great he was and many thought he could walk on water if he so desired. I did know that he was loved by all under his command and he loved those in The Watch. He shall be greatly missed. RIP
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#562
Re:MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A. 7 Years, 9 Months ago  
Served in the 2nd in Germany when Mr MCALPINE WAS CO YOU COULD NOT HAVE ASKED FOR A BETTER CO. He always thought of and took care of his men and was well respected by them.This is a great loss to the Regament.Both him and Mrs MCALPINE WERE BOTH RESPECTED BY THE TROOPS.
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#565
Re:MCALPINE, LGen Duncan A. 7 Years, 8 Months ago  
The memorial service is at 1200 hours at Chalmers United Church, 212 Barrie Street, Kingston on Saturday, 30 January 2010.
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#566
McALPINE, Lieut. Gen. (retired) Duncan Alastair 7 Years, 8 Months ago  
Globe and Mail

Wednesday January 27, 2010
McALPINE, Lieut. Gen. (retired) Duncan Alastair, of Kingston
Died peacefully in Florida on January 23, 2010, surrounded by family. He enjoyed life fully, supported for 57 years by his beloved wife, Bonnie, until her death in October 2003. He is missed by his children Lynn in Montreal, Bruce (Nancy) in Toronto, Keith (Rhonda) in Chicago, and Craig (Alice) in Montreal, as well as by his six grandchildren, and seven great- grandchildren.

Duncan joined the Black Watch (RHR) of Canada during World War II and the Black Watch was never far from his thoughts. When he retired from his military career including time in Europe and Viet Nam, he worked for a period for Brascan/Brascade and the Ontario Hospitals' Association before moving to Kingston. There, he invested actively in the university and his church, as well as finding time for his lifelong love of history. Throughout his life, Duncan's enthusiasm encouraged those around him to imagine and achieve things they might not have otherwise. In reflecting upon his life, he noted challenges and some successes, which he described as being made possible through the love and support of his family.

A ceremony to celebrate Duncan's life will be held on Saturday January 30 at 12:00 p.m. at Chalmers United Church, 212 Barrie Street, Kingston, Ontario. While flowers are appreciated, a donation to the charity of your choice in Duncan's name would be preferred, or to organizations that he himself supported (such as the Black Watch, Salvation Army, and Covenant House). For Military Protocol related issues, and Senior Serving Officers who wish to attend, you are encouraged to contact the Black Watch 514-496-1686 x246.

Online Guestbook: http://www.legacy.com/gb2/default.aspx?bookid=5892834115596
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#571
Re:McALPINE, Lieut. Gen. (retired) Duncan Alastair 7 Years, 8 Months ago  
Myself and my wife Yvonne made the trek Eastward up the 401 to Kingston on Sat.30 for the memorial for LT.Gen.D.McAlpine to pay our last respects. Although, it was cold there was a very good turn out for this fine gentleman. Duncan A. will be surley missed by all ranks of the "Black Watch" family. I had a few ask what he was like as our C.O. in Germany. After looking back all I could tell them was that he looked after his Battalion, and really isn't that what it was all about.
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#604
Re:Special to The Globe and Mail 7 Years, 7 Months ago  
Officer gave lifetime of service to beloved Black Watch regiment

BUZZ BOURDON

Special to The Globe and Mail

March 24, 2010

OTTAWA -- Fighting as an infantry officer during the Second World War with the Carleton and York regiment, Duncan McAlpine was leading a 50-man patrol when he and his New Brunswickers came under machine-gun fire from their German enemies. It was September, 1944.

After taking cover from the hailstorm of bullets fired from the extremely accurate German MG 42 guns, the young Mr. McAlpine, a junior infantry officer who had joined the army four years earlier at the tender age of 18, planned his assault on the enemy position.

There was a lot to think about and little time to do it. How many Germans were there? Did they have support weapons such as flame-throwers and mortars? Were there tanks hidden nearby?

After the objective was taken a short while later, Mr. McAlpine looked down at his battledress uniform. To his horror, he noticed a German bullet had cut its way through his jacket and underwear, grazed his neck and cut off his pistol holster. In the heat of battle, he hadn't felt a thing.

The incident was written up in the Toronto Telegram soon afterward. "It wasn't comfortable, but we've all had experiences like that," Mr. McAlpine told the reporter. "I had to buy new battledress. My old one was no more good, so I sent it home to my wife and told her to look at what the moths did."

That insouciance was typical of Mr. McAlpine in both peace and war. Known as a gentle man, he never raised his voice as he climbed the ranks to the top of the postwar Canadian army. By the time he retired from the regular army, he wore a chest full of medals as one of Canada's few lieutenant-generals on the active list.
Duncan McAlpine grew up in Montreal during the Depression. In 1940, soon after he turned 18, he entered the venerable granite armoury of the Royal Highland Regiment of Canada (Black Watch) to offer his services in the war against Nazi Germany.

A newly minted provisional officer, Mr. McAlpine began learning his new trade. It didn't always go smoothly. Nicknamed "Snuffy" by his peers, he was described by one superior as "evidencing an aggressive bumptiousness." Over time, though, the traditions of the officers' mess and some firm guidance smoothed his rough edges.

After transferring to the Carleton and York regiment, Mr. McAlpine got his fill of combat, first in Italy, then in France and the Netherlands following the Allies' invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944.
After the war, Mr. McAlpine decided to stay in the army and make it his career. It turned out to be a good decision, because the federal government had big plans for the regular army, which had a mere 5,000 officers and men before the war started in 1939.

The regular army was now to expand dramatically to fulfill Canada's new international commitments. The Cold War had become hot in 1950, when Communist China supported a North Korean invasion of South Korea. Canada, under the direction of the United Nations, sent a brigade to fight.

In Europe, Canada and NATO faced off against the Soviet Union and its Eastern European client states in a standoff that many feared would lead to nuclear war.

To support the new alliance, prime minister Louis St. Laurent and his cabinet authorized the deployment to Germany of 27 Canadian Infantry Brigade. One of its units was the 1st Canadian Highland Battalion, and Mr. McAlpine was one of the officers who joined soon after it formed in May, 1951.

Mr. McAlpine and his unit reached Germany in December, 1951. They were shocked at what they saw, especially the new soldiers who had not fought in the war. Simon Falconer wrote in his 2008 book Canada's Black Watch: "Hanover, where the battalion was to be located, still bore the scars of war - streets were filled with rubble and people were living in cellars and bombed-out buildings."

Over the next 18 months, Mr. McAlpine and his men worked hard, but also played hard. There were plenty of sports, the rate of exchange was extremely favourable, German beer was excellent and the local girls were friendly.

In November, 1953, the battalion was rotated home to Camp Aldershot, N.S., a temporary base until Camp Gagetown, N.B., was opened a few years later. The battalion also had a new name. Since Montreal's Black Watch was the senior highland regiment in the order of battle, it was decided that both highland battalions that had been formed just two years earlier would become the 1st and 2nd Battalions, RHR of Canada (Black Watch).

In 1963, Mr. McAlpine was appointed commanding officer of the Black Watch 2nd Battalion, then based at Fort St. Louis in Werl, Germany. Now in command of almost a thousand men, most from the Atlantic provinces, he was formally responsible for their welfare, training, discipline and morale.

Life was busy, with skill-at-arms competitions, guards of honour for visiting dignitaries, mess dinners, athletic competitions, parades and field exercises held at the brigade and divisional level. Warsaw Pact forces, including thousands of tanks, were not far away, and the Canadians could expect to be in combat within a matter of hours if the balloon went up. Fortunately, it never did, and Mr. McAlpine took the 2nd Battalion back home to Gagetown in 1965.

The following year, Mr. McAlpine and the 2nd Battalion were sent to Cyprus as part of a peacekeeping force. Mr. McAlpine was later sent to Vietnam to command Canada's military contingent of the International Commission for Control and Supervision.

One Black Watch soldier who never had the privilege of serving under Mr. McAlpine heard all about him from his brother, who was under his command in Germany. "Many thought he could walk on water," the soldier said. "I did know he was loved by all under his command and he loved (his men)."

By the end of the 1990s, Mr. McAlpine was back in the uniform of his beloved Black Watch when he was appointed the regiment's honorary lieutenant-colonel. He later became honorary colonel, reporting on the unit to the colonel-in-chief, Prince Charles. Despite his age, Mr. McAlpine attended as many events as possible.


On Nov. 10, 2009, Mr. McAlpine wore his Black Watch ceremonial uniform, complete with kilt, medals, white spats and sporran, when he greeted Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall at the regiment's historic armoury on Bleury Street in Montreal.

Carrying his claymore in his left hand, the insignia of commander of the Order of Military Merit hanging at his neck, Mr. McAlpine saluted his colonel-in-chief before the prince presented new colours to the regiment.
It was a glittering occasion. Mr. McAlpine, beaming proudly, was front and centre, where he belonged, 70 years after he first walked in the door to join up.

Duncan Alistair McAlpine died in Florida on Jan. 23. He leaves his daughter, Lynn; sons Bruce, Keith and Craig; six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. His wife, Bonnie, predeceased him in 2003 after 57 years of marriage.
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#607
Re:Special to The Globe and Mail 7 Years, 6 Months ago  
Rick and I read the article and send cudos to Buzz Bourdon for writing a nice article - great job Buzz - one of ours!
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