Minister O'Toole joins MP Carmichael in honouring Second World War Veterans with commemorative tribute
TORONTO, July 31, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Erin O'Toole, Minister of Veterans Affairs, and John Carmichael, Member of Parliament for Don Valley West, today hosted a ceremony recognizing Canadian Veterans of the Second World War at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre.
Alongside family, friends and community, 272 Second World War Veterans received a commemorative lapel pin and certificate of recognition in honour of the extraordinary role Canadians played in the Allied victory.
- On September 10, 2014, to mark the 75th anniversary of Canada's engagement in the Second World War, the Government of Canada announced a national tribute to honour living Veterans of the Second World War.
- Canadians who served at least one day with Canadian forces, or with any other Allied force including the Canadian or British Merchant Navy, either at home or abroad, during the Second World War, are eligible to apply for the commemorative lapel pin and certificate. Request forms are available online at veterans.gc.ca, and by calling Veterans Affairs Canada at 1-866-522-2122.
- With a population of some 11 million in 1939, Canada's contribution to the Second World War was disproportionately large. From 1939 to 1945, more than one million Canadians and Newfoundlanders served, with more than 55,000 being wounded and over 45,000 giving their lives.
- It is estimated that there are approximately 80,000 Canadian Second World War Veterans alive today.
- The design of the commemorative pin and the illustration on the certificate are based on the original "Victory Nickel" which features a flaming torch and a large 'V' standing both for victory and the coin's denomination. The coin was originally in circulation from 1943 to 1945 and was re-issued in 2005 to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day.
- Ceremonies are being held in conjunction with Canada's World Wars Commemoration period, which was launched in August 2014 to mark the Centennial of the First World War. Between now and 2020, the Government of Canada will organize and support events and initiatives that pay homage to the many Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served during the World Wars, and will recognize the enduring legacy of these historical events.
"It is humbling to be in the presence of so many of Canada's finest sons and daughters. These are the defenders of our nation and the values we uphold. It is with admiration and gratitude we honour you today. We will never forget."
The Honourable Erin O'Toole, Minister of Veterans Affairs
"My sincerest thanks and gratitude to the men and women of the Second World War who answered the call and defended the principles of freedom, peace and democracy. We are forever in your debt."
John Carmichael, Member of Parliament for Don Valley West
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information: Martin Magnan, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs, 613-996-4649; Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canada, 613-992-7468