On July 10th 1943, just after dawn the Patricia’s landed in Sicily, near Pachino. Alongside the Loyal Edmonton Regiment and the Seaforth Highlanders of Canada, the Canadians of the 2nd Brigade, 1st Canadian Div, met light resistance from Italian troops.
From the Regimental War Diaries:
“As we approached closer to the shore, flares could be seen being put up by an enemy even more uncertain than ourselves… machine gun tracer (sic) made very attractive patterns against the sky in the distance while on the shore every once in a while would appear a bright flash followed by quite a loud report as though someone were tossing grenades about.”
As the campaign progressed, Lt C. Sydney Frost wrote:
“Reports now began to filter back from the front of the stiff resistance the Allied troops had been encountering from four German divisions (the Hermann Goering, the 15th and 19th Panzer Grenadier and the 1st Parachute Division). The Patricias’ first serious battle with these tough professionals had been at Leonforte on July 22nd, when the Regiment had driven the Germans from the town and won its first battle honour and decorations for bravery; but the cost had been high- 21 killed and 40 wounded.
On July 26th at Nissoria Ridge, and again on July 28th at Agira, the Regiment had routed Hitler’s best troops, gaining further honours.”
During the 38 day Sicilian Campaign, the Regiment renewed its traditions of professionalism, tenacity and aggressiveness that were demonstrated so aptly in WWI.