Private Richard Mar

Richard Mar was born in Vancouver, British Columbia on June 19, 1917, he was one of three children. Richard’s parents immigrated to Canada from China in search of a better life for their family. Richard was very studious and completed his grade 12 education, excelling in mathematics.  He was also fluent in both English and Mandarin.  As a young man, Richard worked as a foreman at a fishery canning company. 

World War 2 was in motion and Richard wanted to serve his country. He enlisted in the Infantry on August 19, 1942, and dreamed of becoming a Paratrooper.  During the recruiting phase, Richard was described as tall, athletic and having a pleasant, quiet manner with good education and superior learning ability.  Richard’s dream came true when he graduated on February 19, 1943, from Fort Benning, Georgia, U.S.A.  He became the first and only Asian paratrooper to serve with the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion. 

Richard was taken on strength overseas and served in the Head Quarters Platoon before returning home at the end of the war.  After the war, Richard went back to the fish cannery industry, living out his remaining years until he passed away on September 1, 1973, at the age of 56. If you have read this post, then you have taken the time to remember Private Richard Mar.  


Sten MkV Submachine Gun

The Sten submachine gun can be found in several models, the one pictured here is a Sten MKV, produced for the Paratroopers. It was an inexpensive firearm to produce, costing less than $10.00 per unit. It chambered a 9mm cartridge with a firing rate 550 rounds per minute and an effective range of 100 yards. Also shown is a magazine pouch or bandolier that allowed a soldier to carry an additional 30 round magazines. Private Mar trained and carried a similar Sten MkV Submachine gun during his service in Europe.