NEW! Canadian Military History Trivia Challenge

Month: January 2014

News, Our Veterans

Park Commemorates Gunners

The memory of Newfoundland’s gunners is kept alive in the newly completed Royal Artillery Park in St. John’s on land adjacent to Pleasantville Branch of The Royal Canadian Legion. The park is distinguished by the large pieces of weaponry. There is a 7.2-inch field gun similar to those used by the 59th (Newfoundland) Heavy Regiment, Royal Artillery, in Normandy and many other battles of the Second World War. From the First World War, there are two German trench mortars and a 100-milimetre Krupp Field gun. There is also a 25-pound gun similar to those used by the 166th (Nfld.) Field Regt., RA, which was formed in Great Britain in July 1941 to defend England from the threat of invasion. The unit also served in North Africa and Italy. Along with the weapons is a Universal Carrier used...
Lost In The Azores
Air Force

Lost In The Azores

Members of the Lost Legion—Royal Canadian Air Force personnel who served overseas in British rather than Canadian units—saw many harsh or uncomfortable places, from Russia to Southeast Asia. Some locations, however, were quite delightful, including the Azores in the Atlantic Ocean. The Portuguese discovered the islands in 1431 and claimed ownership of them ever after. Between 1580 and 1640, Portugal was part of Spain, and the Azores were fair game for Elizabethan adventurers who preyed on Spanish shipping. In 1591, Sir Richard Grenville, captain of the British warship Revenge, fought his heroic battle off the island of Flores, celebrated in Lord Tennyson’s poem. The Anglo-Portuguese alliance is the oldest in British diplomatic history. Growing out of feudal wars and joint interes...

Faces of War

Published in Legion Magazine, March 1984 By Rosemary Hutchinson Exclusive Audio Version: My friend Charlie and I are cruising down the Strand in a Hillman. Now a Hillman, to the uninitiated, is a type of car spewed out to meet the emergency of wartime. It is extremely small, and much inclined to rattle at an early age, especially this one under Charlie’s heavy hand. A vitriolic mustard shade, it sports two orange blobs of special paint on the hood. In the event of a gas attack these blobs will change color. Charlie and I are at a loss as to the action necessary if this catastrophe occurs, because our gas masks are somewhere in the bedsitter we rent on Earlscourt Road. At the moment I am more concerned with this girl’s driving. Her approach might, at best, be termed nonchalant....

Headstones Damaged By Tribute Stickers

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission is concerned that individuals are placing stickers and other markings on veterans’ headstones without realizing the damage they are causing. David Kettle, the secretary-general of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Canadian Agency, said that over the past 10 years it has become common practice to place adhesive stickers on both veterans’ graves and war graves to recognize the occupants’ service. “I can certainly understand the sentiment behind this practice and at least at first the stickers look attractive. The problem is that they don’t stay attractive,” said Kettle. Weather soon takes its toll on the stickers which detract from the appearance of the headstone. Commission and cemetery staff then have to clean the headstone. This costs t...

Approval Not Given For Wearing Of The Arctic Star

Canadians who receive the Arctic Star for service with British forces during the Second World War cannot wear it since it has not been recognized by Canada’s system of honours and awards. The Arctic Star was announced in 2012 and began production in 2013. It is awarded for operational service of any length north of the Arctic Circle between Sept. 3, 1939, and May 8, 1945. Those eligible include Royal Navy and merchant navy personnel, Royal Air Force members if they landed north of the Arctic Circle or served in the air over this area. Also eligible are non-aircrew who were on operational service in the area and army personnel who served in British ships or in defensively equipped merchant ships. Foreign nationals such as those serving in the Royal Canadian Navy or Royal Australian Na...
Normandy Tour: Juno Beach Route
Army, Military History, Our Veterans, Pilgrimages, Remembrance

Normandy Tour: Juno Beach Route

The 70th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy will introduce a new generation of Canadians to events that have long stirred the imaginations and collective memories of veterans and their children. There will no doubt be extensive television coverage on June 6, centered on major Canadian commemorative events at the Juno Beach Centre in Courseulles-sur-Mer, but there will be much else to see and do in Normandy during June, July and August. Here are some suggestions from someone who has led several group study tours to Northwest Europe. First, if you have not found a place to stay in Normandy, you will need to get on with that right away. As noted in the November/December issue (In The Footsteps Of War) more and more people are travelling to Europe to explore the sites...

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