Rush to Danger with Ted Barris

| January 15, 2020

Juno Beach and Beyond
Rush to Danger with Ted Barris

For our first episode of 2020 acclaimed storyteller Ted Barris joins us to explore his latest book, Rush to Danger: Medics in the Line of Fire. The book is filled with amazing stories about (mostly) Canadian medical personnel who have served in conflicts over the last 150 years. At the core of the book, Ted explores his father’s experience in the Second World War and shares how the son uncovered the father’s story. Alex Barris, another famous Canadian journalist and broadcaster, was a medic in the US Army during the war. He saw action in the aftermath of the Battle of the Bulge. 

The first half of the episode covers the story of Alex Barris. The second half of the episode covers the broader experience of medical personnel at war between 1939 and 1945. Then Ted discusses Canadian medical officers during the Dieppe Raid and Jacob Markowitz, whose story was part of the inspiration for the award-winning classic film The Bridge on the River Kwai. 

Ted Barris’s farther, Alex Barris, in his US Army uniform complete with Red Cross helmet designating him as a medic (Courtesy of Ted Barris).


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Time Stamps

3:58 Uncovering a Father’s Story

9:35 Into the Battle of the Bulge

21:55 Life-Saving Innovation

24:45 Protection for Medical Personnel at War?

26:15 Medical Officers at Dieppe

30:20 Jacob Markowitz and The Bridge on the River Kwai

Guest Biography

Ted Barris is an accomplished author, journalist and broadcaster. Barris has authored almost 20 non-fiction books, most of which examine and tell stories related to Canadian military history. He was a recipient of the Veterans’ Affairs Commendation in 2011 and in 2018 another of his recent books, Dam Busters: Canadian Airmen and the Secret Raid Against Nazi Germany, received the RCAF Association NORAD Trophy. 


The following links offer more information on the topics discussed in this episode:


7 Days in Normandy with Scott Entwistle

Great Women During the War

Double Threat with Ellin Bessner


The Battle of the Bulge

The Dieppe Raid

Medical Services


Juno Beach & Beyond is hosted and edited by Alex Fitzgerald-Black, the centre’s Digital Projects Coordinator.

Mackenzie King’s speech to British Parliament from the British Pathé YouTube channel:

Artillery firing sounds from the CBC News: The National YouTube Channel:

Female veteran’s voice (Eileen Green, née Short) Courtesy of The Memory Project, Historica Canada: 

Winston Churchill’s “Finest Hour” speech from Jonathan Thomas’s YouTube channel:

Spitfire sound effect from Jason Kirby’s YouTube channel:

Dramatic Interlude by Alexander Nakarada |

Music promoted by

Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

Dispatches from Juno shares all the news, events, and stories from the Juno Beach Centre in France and Canada. Interested in contributing a story to the blog? Email the editor at

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