NEW! Canadian Military History Trivia Challenge

Month: December 2010


The Lost Leadership Cadre: Navy, Part 42

The small ships of the Sheep Dog Navy at war in the vile North Atlantic came to be seen as Canada’s naval war, and as the origins of the modern Canadian navy. But during the Second World War the overriding objective of the professional Royal Canadian Navy was securing the basics of a balanced postwar fleet—destroyers and cruisers, and later aircraft carriers. This meant continuing to train the young RCN officers in the big ships and establishments of the Royal Navy. It would also serve the ‘big fleet’ objective if Canadians were spread even more broadly in the British fleet during wartime. So Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve officer candidates were also sent to the RN, “to serve,” as Admiral Percy Nelles said in early 1940, “in interesting appointments overseas and represent ...

Health File

Remembrance Day Sorrow It can be distressing when you or someone close to you is overcome by emotion at a Remembrance Day ceremony—but that’s no reason not to take part in services if you want to go. “The majority of people are likely to have some emotional reaction; it’s Remembrance Day and there’s grief,” says Dr. Jitender Sareen, psychiatry professor at the University of Manitoba and a post-traumatic stress disorder specialist at Deer Lodge Centre, a veterans’ rehabilitation and long-term care facility in Winnipeg. “If they want to go and want to participate, they should try to go,” even if it causes an emotional response, he says. Such a reaction is normal, and for most people the feeling of anxiety and sadness will pass, particularly if they talk about it with someone close. ...
Air Force

Not Forgotten: Air Force, Part 42

As the Second World War reached its conclusion, many problems confronted the victors, from disarming defeated enemies to repatriating millions of men and women to their homelands. However, many thousands would not be going home. They included the Allied aircrews lost on operations—and in most cases no one knew exactly where they were or how they had been killed. All of them had taken off into hostile skies and vanished. Survivors parachuting from burning planes brought only the most fragmentary reports of what had transpired. Enemy records were rarely explicit. Those of civilians in formerly occupied countries were only marginally better. In many cases the search began with letters to mayors and burgomasters, asking for information about possible Allied graves in their local cemeter...

Canadian Football League Honours Veterans’ Spirit

A player in the Canadian Football League will be recognized this year for embodying the spirit of Canada’s veterans with a new trophy dedicated to outstanding player and executive Jake Gaudaur. Canadian Football League Comm­iss­­­ioner Mark Cohon was joined by Veterans Affairs Minister Jean-Pierre Blackburn and Jake Gaudaur’s daughter, Jackie Gaudaur, in unveiling the trophy at a ceremony Aug. 20 at the Moss Park Armoury in Toronto. The ceremony was attended by members of Canada’s veterans organizations, including Dominion Treasurer Michael Cook, representing The Royal Canadian Legion. “The Jake Gaudaur Veterans’ Award is a great example of the legacies that can be created when we work with others to engage more Canadians in remembrance,” said Blackburn. “Being a veteran himself and ...
On This Date

On This Date – December 2010

1 DECEMBER 1996 A recovery team locates the remains of crew members killed when Royal Canadian Air Force Dakota KN-563 crashed during a monsoon on June 21, 1945. The plane had been flying supplies to British troops in Burma (now Myanmar). 2 DECEMBER 1968 The Canadian submarine Rainbow (2nd) is commissioned. Purchased from the United States, she was originally known as the USS Argonaut, launched in 1944. 3 DECEMBER 1969 Tragedy strikes as the Canadian aircraft carrier Bonaventure is being decommissioned. The ship’s aviation fuel tanks are emptied and cleaned, but one tank does not vent properly, and the first two sailors who enter the tank are overcome by deadly fumes. Two other sailors lose their lives during the rescue attempt. 4 DECEMBER 1950 Canadian warships C...

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An informative primer on Canada’s crucial role in the Normandy landing, June 6, 1944.