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1 oz. Pure Silver Coin – Second World War Battlefront: The Battle of Hong Kong (2016)

1 oz. Pure Silver Coin – Second World War Battlefront: The Battle of Hong Kong (2016)

$92.95 CAD
Mintage: 10,000
STATUS:
Ships Dec-09-2019
Canada and US only
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Second coin in the new Second World War Battlefront series. Order today!

“…All ranks fought it out to the last and more cannot be asked of any man.” – The Honourable J.L. Ralston, speaking in the House of Commons.

Canada's first land combat of the Second World War began on December 8, 1941, when, mere hours after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese launched an invasion on the British Crown Colony of Hong Kong. Outnumbered and less well equipped than the enemy, the odds were not in the Canadians' favour as they defended the peninsula, then the island itself. Over 550 of the 1,975 Canadians sent to Hong Kong never made it home; but during the 17 days of fierce fighting, they fought valiantly, even engaging in hand-to-hand combat with the enemy, as they defended Hong Kong to the very end. This fine silver coin pays tribute to the bravery and resolve of these Canadian soldiers throughout the Battle of Hong Kong.

A poignant addition to your military-themed coin display. Order yours today!

Special features:
  • COMMEMORATES CANADA'S ROLE IN KEY BATTLES OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR. Your coin is a commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Hong Kong, and the legacy of the Canadian soldiers who fought in one of the first land battles in the Pacific during the Second World War.
  • FINE DETAILS. Your coin is struck with fine details which showcase the Royal Canadian Mint's world-class artistry and skillful engraving.
  • EFFIGY OF KING GEORGE VI: Your coin features the effigy of King George VI by T. H. Paget.
  • 1-OUNCE 99.99% PURE SILVER COIN. Your coin has no GST/HST.

Design:

Designed by Canadian artist Joel Kimmel, your coin captures the intensity of the fight and the sheer bravery of Canadian soldiers during the Battle of Hong Kong (December 8-25, 1941). Amidst the jungle conditions and rugged terrain of Hong Kong Island, two Canadian soldiers are among the Allied forces that formed a line of defence to counter the enemy's advance toward the Wong Nai Chung Gap. The soldier in the foreground is dressed in the shorts and short sleeves of the Pacific uniform; rushing forward with resolve and courage, he makes his way past a concrete pillbox that bears the markings of heavy artillery fire. Behind him, a soldier moves up the sloped edge of a cliff overlooking the bay, and aims his Lee Enfield rifle with bayonet. The all-out enemy assault was backed by a strong air presence, as represented by the Mitsubishi Zero falling from the clouds towards the ground, with heavy smoke rising up from its propeller. The overwhelming nature of the Japanese attack is also conveyed through the ships that fill the bay between the island and the mountainous mainland in the background.

Did you know…
  • The Japanese invasion was launched just eight hours after the December 7 attack on the U.S. naval base at Pearl Harbor, yet the start of the Battle of Hong Kong is on December 8th—this is due to the International Date Line, which means Hong Kong and Hawaii are separated by an 18-hour time difference.
  • Canada's force in Hong Kong also included two medical officers, three chaplains, two Auxiliary Service Officers, two Nursing Sisters, two officers of the Canadian Dental Corps and their assistants, plus a detachment of the Canadian Postal Corps.
  • Their heavier equipment—or 212 of the vehicles assigned to the Canadian forces in Hong Kong—would never arrive; on-board the freighter Don Jose, they made it as far as Manilla before the war against Japan was declared, and were then diverted to assist in the defence of the Philippines.
  • Among the many casualties was the first Second World War Canadian recipient of the Victoria Cross who selflessly threw himself on a grenade to save his fellow soldiers of the Winnipeg Grenadiers' “A” Company.
  • A Newfoundland dog named Gander was also posthumously awarded for his sacrifice, by picking up a grenade and rushing toward the enemy—his name is among those on the Hong Kong Veterans Memorial Wall in Ottawa.
  • The Japanese invasion of Hong Kong began on the morning of December 8, 1941, when aircraft attacked the Kai Tak airport before targeting the Sham Shui Po, where two men of the Royal Canadian Signals became the first Canadian casualties in Hong Kong.
  • On the ground, the large enemy force fought hard to reach the high ground as they pushed south along the mountainous mainland toward the Gin Drinkers' Line—a defensive line dotted with pillboxes and trenches for the purpose of defending the Kowloon Peninsula and Victoria Harbour. By the evening of December 13, the mainland was lost, and a captured soldier became the first Canadian infantryman killed in the Second World War.
  • Refusing to surrender, the Allied forces regrouped on Hong Kong Island where they were split into two defending forces: an East Brigade (including the Royal Rifles of Canada) and a West Brigade (with the Winnipeg Grenadiers). The enemy launched its amphibious assault on the island on December 18 before pushing to its centre, Wong Nai Chung Gap, and effectively severed the defence in half.
  • There was no relief in sight for the beleaguered troops. In the east, the Royal Rifles succeeded in driving out the enemy from several hill positions but soon found themselves depleted of ammunition, food and water. In the west, “A” Company of the Grenadiers was surrounded and captured. Lawson himself became a casualty when, his headquarters surrounded, he left with two pistols in hand to “fight it out.” For three days, “D” Company of the Grenadiers fought off enemy advances until their door was eventually blown down; inside, the Japanese were shocked to find just 37 wounded Grenadiers, fighting until they had little left.
  • The Allies' inevitable surrender came on December 25—a day that became known as “Black Christmas.” For their part, the Canadians had shown incredible resilience as they held their own against a much larger, well-armed enemy force that had combined heavy artillery fire and air domination. Canadian casualties initially numbered 290 killed and 493 wounded, but many more would endure suffering and hardship as Prisoners of War (POWs). The soldiers of this Canadian contingent in Hong Kong are forever remembered for their perseverance, courage and sacrifice, earning them a place of honour in our nation's military history.

Packaging:

Your coin is encapsulated and presented in a Royal Canadian Mint-branded maroon clamshell with a graphic beauty box.

Order your coin today!

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Specifications

  • No.147818
  • Mintage10,000
  • Composition99.99% pure silver
  • Finishproof
  • Weight (g) 31.39
  • Diameter (mm) 38
  • Edgeserrated
  • Certificateserialized
  • Face value20 dollars
  • ArtistJoel Kimmel (reverse), T. H. Paget (obverse)

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