Ontarians Encouraged To Honour And Remember Veterans



    McGuinty Government Supports Initiatives To Keep The Memory Of Veterans'
    Contributions Alive

    TORONTO, Nov. 6 /CNW/ - All Ontarians are encouraged to honour and
remember veterans and keep the memories of their contributions alive during
Veterans' Week, said Minister Responsible for Seniors Aileen Carroll at the
start of Veterans' Week.
    "We need to help future generations remember the contributions the
sacrifices veterans made to preserving our freedom," said Carroll. "On behalf
of the Government of Ontario, I encourage everyone to take time during
Veterans' Week to pay tribute by participating in local Legion activities,
school assemblies or faith services, or just by saying thank you to a
veteran."
    Ontario is continuing to expand its efforts to ensure future generations
never forget the debt of gratitude owed to our veterans. Ontario government
activities for Veterans' Week include:

    
    -   The launch of an advertising campaign for licence plates that feature
        a poppy and are available only to veterans
    -   A Tribute to the Fallen Ceremony on November 9, honouring soldiers
        who died in the past year
    -   The second annual provincial Ceremony of Remembrance at the
        Veterans' Memorial on Remembrance Day, November 11.
    

    These activities complement other recent McGuinty government veterans'
tributes such as dedicating a stretch of Highway 401 as "Highway of Heroes" in
September 2007, and the inauguration of the Veterans' Memorial at Queen's Park
in September 2006.
    "As time passes, it is increasingly important for younger generations to
know about the history and achievements of our veterans," said Minister of
Transportation Jim Bradley. "The veteran licence plates are a year-round
reminder of our debt to these men and women for their brave service."
    More than 1.5 million Canadians served in the two world wars and in the
Korean War, and more than 110,000 gave their lives for their country. There
are more than 80,000 Second World War and Korean War veterans currently living
in Ontario.
    Veterans' Week runs from November 5 through to Remembrance Day,
November 11. Throughout the week, commemorative events and activities will be
held in communities across Ontario - from ceremonies at war memorials to
school assemblies, services in places of worship and appreciation lunches and
dinners at Royal Canadian Legion branches.
    "Strong and vital communities are the legacy of those who fought so
bravely to preserve the freedoms we enjoy today," Carroll said. "This week we
are remembering, honouring, thanking veterans and those on the home front, and
celebrating their contributions to our freedom. Let us never forget."

    More information about Veterans' Week can be obtained at the Ontario
government's website, www.Ontario.ca/veterans

    
    Disponible en français

                            www.ontarioseniors.ca
                       www.personnesageesdelontario.ca


    Backgrounder
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

                           Ontario HONOURS Veterans
    

    Ontario has a variety of events and services to recognize the
contributions of veterans and all of those who have served in times of war and
peace.

    The Veterans' Memorial

    The Veterans' Memorial on the front lawn of Queen's Park honours Canada's
men and women who served their country in times of war and peace. The Memorial
was dedicated at a formal unveiling ceremony on September 17, 2006, and was
the site of an inaugural Ceremony of Remembrance on November 11, 2006. Each
year, a Ceremony of Remembrance will be held at the Veterans' Memorial on
November 11.

    Ceremonies of Remembrance

    Ceremonies of Remembrance are held annually at Queen's Park to
commemorate D-Day, the Battle of Vimy Ridge, Remembrance Day and other
important military milestones. The government also hosts a Tribute to the
Fallen Ceremony annually to honour soldiers who died in the line of duty in
the past year.

    Highway of Heroes

    The Ontario government has formally dedicated a section of Highway 401 as
the Highway of Heroes to commemorate the bravery and sacrifice of Canadian
soldiers. Highway of Heroes signs have been installed along the route,
honouring Canadian soldiers who have made the supreme sacrifice in the line of
duty. This dedication pays tribute to the solemn journey fallen soldiers take
once they return to Canada and are formally transported from Trenton to
Toronto.

    Veterans' Commemorative Park

    Created in 1999 for the International Year of Older Persons, the
Veterans' Commemorative Park is a visual reminder of the contributions made by
Ontario's veterans. This legacy project was a collaborative effort between the
Ontario Seniors' Secretariat, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation and the
Royal Canadian Legion, Ontario Command District G. The park is located on
Highway 416, the Veterans Memorial Highway, just outside of Kemptville,
Ontario, and features a monument and gardens used for local Remembrance Day
ceremonies and other Legion activities.

    Veteran Graphic License Plates

    Since November 2003, the Ministry of Transportation has issued 27,000
veteran graphic plates free to veterans certified by its partner, the Royal
Canadian Legion, Ontario Command. The license plates feature a red poppy,
recognized internationally as a "symbol of collective reminiscence" and
adopted by the Royal Canadian Legion as its Flower of Remembrance in 1921.

    The Soldiers Aid Commission

    The commission is an arms-length organization of the provincial
government. The commission is one source of financial assistance for veterans
in need who fought in the world wars and Korean War, and their surviving
dependents living in Ontario.

    Services for Senior Veterans

    Ontario Senior Secretariat's website provides an overview of the programs
and services provided to Ontario's older veterans. Services for Senior
Veterans can be found in English at www.ontarioseniors.ca or in French at
www.personnesageesdelontario.ca.

    The Memory Project

    The Memory Project is an educational program of the Dominion Institute
that connects veterans and students, online and in classrooms, and includes an
extensive digital archive of text, images and audio resources. The project
received Ontario government support for its activity across the province and
is promoted by the Ontario Seniors' Secretariat. More information can be found
at www.thememoryproject.com.

    Continuing Care Research Project

    A partnership between the Ontario government through the Ontario Seniors'
Secretariat, Veterans Affairs Canada and seniors' organizations, the
Continuing Care Research Project investigates ways to improve support services
to veterans, seniors and their families.

    
    Disponible en français

                            www.ontarioseniors.ca
                       www.personnesageesdelontario.ca
    





For further information:

For further information: Sandra Nicholson, Communications Branch, (416)
314-7242

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