An incredible and extraordinary story which proves the great humanity and empathy of Canadian soldiers.
On December 13th, 1944 Jack Rossiter, a Seaforth Highlander and his Company took shelter in a house (44°25’44.5”N 12°°00’08.3”E) close to the Canale Naviglio, near Bagnacavallo, to regroup before crossing the Canal.
He told us that there had been much shelling and shooting going on and the civilians had evacuated the area.
“ We were about 500 metres outside the town and took temporary shelter in a farmhouse ( I am sure it had the name “Casa Maria”) . We had heard loud crying coming from the place and on entering we found a woman in the throes of childbirth. One of our men , I can’t remember his name was a prairie farmer who had experience with the birthing procedure and used the open fireplace to boil hot water to clean up the lady and baby and do the best he could look after her. We were on the move and I am unable to tell you the outcome apart from the fact that we were told later the baby survived, the mother may have survived ?. We had no idea how long she had been alone in the building ( I was 18 at the time and this was my first experience with childbirth. I had no idea of the pain that woman was suffering but she was certainly screaming loudly, and she must have been extremely frightened both by the birth and the war going on around her ). Thinking back she was not a young girl, possibly mid twenties.“
>Can anybody help us? We would like know whether the baby remained in Italy or went to Canada and any other useful information.