An 11-year-old boy in Bass River, N.S., has raised $13,000 to fund a war memorial to the animals with military service.
Noah Tremblay, who says he wears his remembrance poppy in honour of animals as well as people, raised $10,000 on his own through donations, selling lip balm and at farmers’ markets. He persuaded Colchester County Council to kick in the final $3,000 after showing councillors his 2010 project for a regional heritage fair. He designed a metre-tall headstone with panels that open to reveal a collection of photos and stories about animals in war.
He told council that animals are forgotten war heroes who lugged heavy boxes of ammunition, found and protected injured people, carried messages, even were used as mobile bombs.
The Grade 6 student hopes to have his memorial constructed by this summer in Veterans Memorial Park in Bass River.
Animals are also memorialized at the entrance to the Memorial Chamber in the Peace Tower in Ottawa. Inscribed below carvings of carrier pigeons, a reindeer, pack mule, horse and dog are the words ‘The humble beasts that served and died.’ Above the words ‘The Tunnellers’ friends’ are images of mice and canaries in a cage. The carvings are featured in a virtual tour of the Peace Tower for children on the Veterans Affairs Canada’s website.