books | History | 9780864926487
As You Were
As You Were
Pub date: April 1, 2011
Rights: World
As You Were: The Tragedy at Valcartier
Gerry Fostaty (Author)

Summer, 1974 — Six teenaged boys died and fifty-four were injured in an explosion on a Canadian Forces Base in Valcartier, Quebec. A live grenade inadvertently made its way into a box of dud ammunition, and its pin was pulled during a lecture on explosives safety. One hundred and forty boys survived, each isolated in their trauma, yet expected to carry on with their lives.

Thirty-four years later, Gerry Fostaty, who was an 18-year-old sergeant that summer and one of the first on the scene after the explosion, received an unexpected e-mail from his former sergeant-major, triggering a journey into memory, a quest for a true picture of what had happened on that day. In As You Were, Fostaty pieces together the story of how a series of preventable mistakes led to tragedy.

The only full account of an event that received minor attention at the time, As You Were is the story of a normal day turned horrific; how duty, responsibility, and honour make ordinary people take extraordinary measures; and how the military did their best to ignore this devastating incident.

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"Written in a clear, engaging voice and never descends into sensationalist finger-pointing . . . a cogent and provocative reassessment of a tragic incident the DND has done little to address." Paul Challen, Quill & Quire

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