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Canada Remembers

h t 75 Covering the East & West Kootenays and Boundary Country


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D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944 -2019

Stoker Russell Craig A life of adventure The Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 24 Cranbrook, is marking one of the most momentous events in history with a special ceremony in downtown Cranbrook this week.

Falling within the latter category is Stoker Russell Craig, of the Merchant Navy, 22-year-old son of Mr. and Mrs. S.T. Craig, of Cranbrook, who has been spending a wellearned leave here with his parents — his first visit home in three years of strenuous service on land and sea. During those three years Craig has experienced several aerial bombings, during one of which he was buried under debris for several hours, had three ships torpedoed under him in the U-boat infested Atlantic, and for good measure spent several weeks in an Italian prison camp in Tunisia, later effecting his escape in company with a group of fellow prisoners.

Thursday, June 6, marks the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the invasion of Nazi-occupied Europe by Allied forces in the Second World War. More than 14,000 Canadian troops were among those who landed on the heavily defended beaches of Normandy, and who fought their way inland against the might of the German armies. On June 6 alone the battles for the beachhead cost 340 Canadian lives and another 574 wounded. Forty-seven Canadians were taken prisoner.

When interviewed at his home this week by a Courier representative, this quiet spoken young man was loath to speak of his exploits, but persistent questioning regarding his experiences elicited sufficient material for several thrilling novels.

Several East Kootenay young men lost their lives that day. Some of their names are on the cenotaph in Rotary Park in Cranbrook, the names of others are etched on cenotaphs in other Kootenay communities.

Injured in Coventry Blitz It was about three years ago that Russell, then in the Royal Canadian Artillery, went overseas, and it was not long before he saw action in the form of aerial bombing. He was caught in the big air blitz on Coventry, suffering a broken leg in that encounter.

In the subsequent two and a half months of the Normandy campaign, Allied casualties totalled 210,000. German casualties totaled 450,000. Canadian casualities amounted to 18,000, which included 5,000 killed. The Cranbrook Legion is inviting all to attend the 75th anniversary of D-day, on June 6, 2019, in Rotary Park. The ceremony to honour the 14,000 Canadians that were on Juno Beach for the invasion begins at 1 p.m. The anniversary is an opportunity to reflect on the achievements — and fates — of those young people who went off to war so long ago. Many came back, many did not. The graves of the latter can be found in Northern Europe, like that of Russell Craig of Cranbrook, who had one of the most remarkable, adventurous war stories of any Canadian soldier, before meeting his tragic end in the Battle of Normandy. His story was retold at the time in the pages of the Cranbrook Courier, excerpts of which are reprinted below.

Buried Twelve Hours Later, while stationed in southern England, he suffered another bombing attack, and with two others had the harrowing experience of being buried alive for some twelve hours until extricated by a rescue squad. No doubt thinking that a sea voyage would be beneficial to his health, young Craig transferred to the Merchant Navy, being signed on as a stoker. Fickle fate pursued him, however, and while in a convoy Gibraltar-bound his ship was picked off by an Axis torpedo. So far as Russell knew, there were only about six survivors, and they spent some three days in their life-boat before being picked up by a rescue ship.

From the Cranbrook Courier, 1944, 1945 Cranbrook sailor has many thrilling adventures Some people may travel their allowed span of three score years and ten without experiencing any untoward incident to disturb the even tenor of their way. There are others, however, engaged in more hazardous occupations who meeting with many thrilling encounters after close brushes with death, without losing their mental composure and with little outward evidence of ill-harm.

The Cranbrook Legion is inviting all to attend the 75th anniversary of D-day, on June 6, 2019, in Rotary Park.

On behalf of all members of The Royal Canadian Legion, today we honor and remember the brave men and women who fought for freedom and supported operations on this fateful day in Normandy. We remember the sacrifices of the families who lost loved ones that day, and who supported those who came home. We will forever be grateful for those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country and freedom around the world.

Lest We Forget.

Royal Canadian Legion, Branch 24


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Stoker Russell Craig A life of adventure More Torpedoes In the spring of 1942, Craig experienced his second torpedoing, this time just off Iceland, but he and his companions were picked up by another merchantman after a few hours in their lifeboat. The third sinking also occurred off Iceland, the torpedo striking shortly after 1 a.m. just after Craig had come off watch. He managed to effect his escape on a life-raft, and was picked up about four hours later by a rescue ship.

Taken Prisoner It was September of 1942 that Craig’s ship has halted by an Italian submarine and he, with other members of the crew, were taken prison. They were landed at Tunis and placed in a concentration camp in that vicinity. Conditions were appalling. The prisoners were allowed only one pint of water a day, and subsisted on starvation rations. They were not maltreated physically, but once when Craig attempted to take a little more than his ration of water from the bucket as it was being passed around he received a sharp reminder with a blow from the flat of a bayonet. In this camp they were under the charge of a Vichy French officer, and after several weeks this officer, evidently fed up with conditions, suggested escape to Allied occupied territory. He warned them of the consequences in the event of recapture, however. A group of prisoners decided to make the attempt, as it seemed to be a question of either being shot or slowly starving to death. One night, accompanied by the French officer, twenty-six of them slipped away and headed in the direction of Algiers.

Made Good Their Escape They were seven days of the trip across the desert, subsisting on food obtained at

villages along the way in exchange for articles of their clothing, etc., the Frenchman acting as interpreter. They were trailed by their Italian captors for some distance, but made good their escape, arriving in Algiers with nothing more on them than their pants. At Algiers, they secured passage on an Oriental ship bound for England and upon reporting at the Merchant Navy headquarters there learned that the authorities were on the point of notifying their relatives of their being listed as prisoners of war. Russell returned to Canada recently and was given leave while awaiting completion of arrangements for a new ship. Mr. and Mrs. Craig, who moved to Cranbrook about a year ago from Arrow Creek in West Kootenay, have three other sons serving in the armed forces. Harry and Archie are now training with the Canadian Army, and a fourth son, Weldon, is serving with the Canadian Navy. Weldon Craig has also had the experience, a minesweeper, torpedoed under him in the Atlantic, only recently, and a week ago Saturday Mr. and Mrs Craig received world of his safe arrival in an Eastern Canadian port. Russell completes his furlough hits weekend and will leave to report for sea duty again, to face whatever fate has in store for him.

(Courier 1944-08-24) Rfn. Russell Craig Killed In Normandy Mr. and Mrs. S. T. Craig, who reside on French avenue, recently received the distressing news from Ottawa advising them that their son Rifleman Russell Sidney Craig, had been killed in action in Normandy. First notification was to the effect that their son was missing on July 5th. Several days later a second wire advised of his death in action.

Still Significant D-Day and its impact are still relevant in 2019 By Kristen Lawson Why is D-Day still remembered 75 years after the event? Slocan Valley Legion President Pat Ashton believes it is still relevant today. “World War II had a huge impact on everyone in Canada,” he says. “People understand it was about liberation and freedom and the beginning of peace.” The victory in Normandy was a turning point in the war and gave hope to many people. Their descendants get to live lives of peace and democracy. “It was the deciding factor in the Second World War,” says Salmo Legion vice president Dave Lyle. D-Day still holds significance for himself as a Legion member and veteran. “It should be remembered to avoid some other catastrophe.” One month before D-Day, Canadian troops liberated the Netherlands, leading appreciative Netherlanders to move here, making places like Salmo their new home and helping to shape the Canada we know today. This legacy remains in the hearts and minds of Canadians as a reminder of what happened in the Second World War, why it needed to be stopped and why we can’t take our freedom for granted. Photo: Wikipedia.org


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Albert Culley “He just soldiered on” By Betsy Kline Albert Culley’s journey to the battlefields of Europe began in Lonely Lake, Manitoba. At the age of 21, Culley joined the army in 1941 and after training in Vernon, became part of the Canadian Scottish Regiment.

“We have had lots of World War II vets as members, and they have all added to the history of the local branch.” In his later years, Culley was recognized for his service and sacrifice during the Second World War in several ways. He was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2013 and the Canada Certificate of Recognition pin. In 2014, on the 70th anniversary of D-Day, Culley was presented with the Ordre national de la Légion d’honneur, France’s highest honour.

Shortly before D-Day, Culley was detained for medical reasons in England. But once recovered, he was sent to the Scheldt Estuary in the Netherlands where the First Canadian Army was charged with clearing out the occupying Germans. The campaign would be successful, but costly. The army suffered 12,873 casualties, 6,367 of those being Canadian and Culley would lose his lower right leg. On Oct. 30, 1944, Culley stepped on a mine and his time of overseas wartime service ended. But Culley’s dedication to his fellow soldiers didn’t end until his death on Aug. 3, 2015 at age 95.

“The Legion was a big part of what Ab believed in,” said Castlegar Legion president Chris McBain. After his injury Culley spent time recuperating and retraining in Vancouver. He then moved to the West Kootenay where he would become an important part of the local Legion. Culley joined the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 170 in Castlegar. He served as the branch’s secretary for 11 years and the treasurer for 10 years. He eventually received a Certificate of Commitment for 50 years of service and could be seen marching with his comrades on Remembrance Day clear up into his 90s. “The Legion was a big part of what Ab believed in,” said Castlegar Legion president Chris McBain.

Albert Culley (right) receiving the Ordre national de la Legion d’honneur from Jean-Christope Fleury, Consul General of France in 2014.

Castlegar veteran honoured at D-Day anniversary event Culley’s son Lorren says his dad didn’t let his leg injury stop him from enjoying life. He would even go so far as to use an old prosthesis in order to go water skiing. But life with a prosthesis wasn’t easy and Lorren says his dad frequently suffered pain or complications because of it. In 2005, at the age of 85, Culley journeyed back to the battlefields of the Netherlands to mark the 60th anniversary of their liberation. “He was so proud to have been a part of the liberation,” said Lorren. “Those men didn’t talk about what had happened very much. “He just soldiered on.”

The Castlegar Royal Canadian Legion Branch #170 would like to acknowledge and remember all those that fought for and died for our continued freedoms on this 75th Anniversary of the Normandy Campaign: D-Day at Juno Beach.


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Creston - Memories etched in stone By Tammy Bradford Creston Museum In Creston, as in virtually every community, stands a monument. Engraved on its stone face, or mounted in bronze relief, are the names of those men and women who died in the great wars of the past century. Those names tell a story, but only part of the story. War is not only the story of those who died, but of all those who served. We don’t have detailed service records for all the Creston Valley men and women who enlisted in the Second World War, but we do know of some who were at D-Day: Don Truscott and Vern Gorrill both served with the Royal Canadian Air Force in England, and may have participated in bombing the beaches to reduce defenses before the troops arrived. Gorrill, in fact, received the Distinguished Flying Cross in April 1944 for the many photographic sorties he made over Germany and France; he may even have taken some of the intelligence photos on which the plans for the landings were based. Lew Truscott served aboard HMCS Thunder, a minesweeper working in the English Channel. Maury Murphy was aboard the corvette HMCS Prescott, escorting the landing craft. Murphy later served on HMCS Woodstock, which went to Scotland after VE Day to pick up the Canadian crew of a minesweeper. As it turned out, the crew was from HMCS Thunder and Truscott was among them. Jim Hulme and Maron Moon were among the infantrymen who raced across the beach through a hail of machine-gun fire, to take the enemy strong points with small-arms fire and grenades. They survived the war, though Moon was wounded in July 1944.

Trooper Jack Hall (right) of Creston and other crewmembers of the tank they called “the Bomb�. (Creston Museum photo).

Walter Cullum, James Sinclair and Daniel Domke served with the Canadian Scottish Regiment. All three survived the landing itself but were killed shortly afterward: Sinclair on June 8, 1944, Cullum two days later and Domke on Aug. 11, 1944, during Operation Totalize, which saw the Canadian troops finally break out of Normandy. Lance Bombardier Eddy Erickson went ashore on D-Day with the Royal Canadian Artillery and was also killed in action, on Aug. 8, 1944, during Operation Totalize. Doug Putnam, quartermaster with the Duke of Connaught’s Own regiment, survived D-Day, but was killed on May 4, 1945, just days before the war ended. Jack Hall, with the Sherbrooke Fusiliers, served as loader/operator in a Canadian-made Sherman tank nicknamed “the Bomb,� one of hundreds that rolled off the landing craft on D-Day. It was the only one still fighting on VE Day the following May. Medic Frederick Murphy, who followed the Canadian troops after the D-Day landings, tended to the many wounded. All we’ve been told about Ed Cole is that he was a paratrooper and went in on Sword Beach on D-Day — which might mean he took part in the daring glider-borne landings of the British Sixth Airborne Division to capture the Pegasus Bridge, among other targets. There were many other Creston Valley men serving in Europe in the days following D-Day: Connie Brunham, Ivon Donkin and Bob Vigne were in the second wave that followed up on the initial landings. Despite the fierce resistance, the Canadian troops captured Juno Beach and penetrated farther into France than any other division. It was an outstanding achievement, and one that the whole nation celebrated with pride.

Trooper Jack Hall (centre) of Creston and other crewmembers of the tank they called “the Bomb�. (Creston Museum photo)

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D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944 -2019

Recognizing the sacrifice past and present joined the Merchant Marines when he was only 15,” said Watson. “He never did find his father but his father did come home and when he came home, his wife had passed away.” This had a huge impact on the family, which became dysfunctional. “He never really talked about it… that’s how he dealt with what he saw when he was over there,” said Watson. “It can’t be good for anybody but they choose to do this… they do it to the best of their ability, and they give up their lives sometimes. Even the ones who come back aren’t always whole, they need help and that’s what we should be doing, is reaching out to them.” On June 2, Branch 36 hosted its annual Veterans and First Responders Dinner in recognition of years of service to their country. Local veterans will also have a chance to meet their Calgary comrades the day after D-Day, June 7. The “Calgary Crew” of the Army, Navy and Air Force Veterans in Canada is undertaking its annual Don Sutherland Memorial Ride and will host a meet and greet in Fernie before continuing onto a commemorative service in Kimberley. Jeannie Watson, president Branch #36 Fernie

By Kimberley Vlasic Seventy-five years ago, thousands of Canadians prepared to storm the French region of Normandy in what was to become the largest amphibious invasion in history. More than 14,000 Canadian soldiers landed or parachuted into France on D-Day, June 6, 1944, which ultimately led to the Allied liberation of Western Europe from Nazi Germany’s control. Not many of these brave men remain today but their sacrifice is not forgotten in Fernie. On June 6, the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 36 will fly its flag at half-mast to mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings. Branch 36 president Jeannie Watson said it’s important to honour all veterans, past and present. “We still have conflict all over the place. Just because it’s not a world war, we still have people that are going on the front lines and we need to support them, any way we can,” she said. “We have to show them that we recognize their sacrifice, somehow. If we don’t acknowledge things like D-Day and Liberation of the Netherlands then what’s the point? Watson has seen firsthand the impact war can have on families for generations to come. Her father-in-law’s dad was at the Battle of Dunkirk during WWII, while his wife battled cancer at home. “His son – my father-in-law – went to look for him and he

Fernie Free Press newspaper and headstone of Frank Townsley of Coal Creek, buried at Benny-surMer Canadian War Cemetery. (Photo from Canadian Virtual War Memorial)

Honouring our veterans and the sacrifice they made on the 75th Anniversary of “LEST WE FORGET” D-Day Branch #36 Fernie


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Grand Forks soldiers’ lives track Allied advance after D-Day Tracking the burial grounds for Grand Forks’ Second World War soldiers also tracks the Allied advance to Berlin. Flying Officer John Alexander Francis McDonald died inside German borders, near the city of Wesel in the northwest of the country, on Feb. 3, 1945.

By Jensen Edwards Though neither the Grand Forks nor Greenwood Legions will have any formal memorial for 75th anniversary of the day Canadian troops stormed Juno Beach on the northwest coast of France, throwing themselves at the heavy bullet fire raining down from German gun posts, the day is still remembered by those in charge. “We must remember,” insisted Grand Forks Legion president Everett Baker. “If we do not, the sacrifice of those Canadian lives will be meaningless.” Baker, who joined the Sea Cadets in his youth in Nova Scotia with a plan to join the Navy as a military chaplain, said of D-Day that “it was an exceptionally difficult and hazardous military operation,” and noted the June 1944 operation proved to be one of Canada’s major defining moments in the war. “For these reasons and more,” said Baker, “it’s important to keep the memory of D-Day.” What many people who talk about the Second World War and D-Day say, reflecting on the importance of the events, is that is it not just important to remember the name, but also the reasons why soldiers volunteered to run against gun fire in a country so far from home. “It was fought over issues that are still alive today,” Baker explained, “such as ideologies of nationalism and injustice. “When I think of my own experience of when I was kid, there were First World War veterans still living,” he said. “Now they’re all gone. It won’t be much longer before the living memory of the Second World War has also passed.” None of the Grand Forks Legion’s 52 military members served in the Second World War. Many local soldiers who did serve never saw the Kettle River again.

Flying Officer John Alexander Francis McDonald is listed among the names on the Bomber Command Memorial Wall in Nanton, Alta. His body is buried in the Rheinberg War Cemetery in Germany. (Photo from the Canadian Virtual War Memorial)

Grand Forks lost two sons within the span of three days in December 1943. First, Flying Officer Robert Morrison McCabe, 23, was killed near Hannover in Germany on Dec. 20. Three days later, during the Battle of Ortona in Italy, Lance Cpl. George Lynn McParlon, died at 31. It would be another eight months before Rifleman Harry Herbert Euerby died in France after D-Day on Sept. 6.

Private John Edward Cook of Grand Forks died at 19 on April 27, 1945. His body is buried at the Holten Canadian War Cemetery in the Netherla nds. (Photo from Canadian Virtual War Memorial)

Hardly any closer to the capital, but with just days remaining until VE Day would be celebrated in early May, the Second World War claimed a final life from Grand Forks. Private John Edward Cook, hardly old enough to remember the beginning of the Great Depression, was killed in battle on April 27, 1945 at the age of 19.

These soldiers, said Baker, “believed their actions in the present would make a significant difference for the future, but it is up to us to ensure their dream of peace is realized.”

As part of that dream of peace and belief in justice, the Grand Forks Legion sees itself as a partner in supporting its own community, members and the region it serves. Last year, it hosted a salmon barbecue in support of those flooded out of homes and businesses. This Canada Day, they are hosting another fundraiser too.

Remembering those who served on this 75th Anniversary

Royal Canadian Legion Branch 059 Grand Forks

“These soldiers believed their actions in the present would make a significant difference for the future. It’s up to us to ensure their dream of peace is realized.” – Everett Baker, President


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Greenwood Legion follows legacy of sacrifice, duty By Jensen Edwards Memories of the Second World War are fading quickly from the Boundary. For such a small population, the region around Greenwood and Midway saw at least four soldiers trade mountains for mortars and head to Europe to fight in the Allied effort. On the 75th anniversary of D-Day, the Greenwood Legion branch only has one surviving veteran of the war. “That was a long time ago,” said president Bob Walker. Walker, like others repeats the refrain on remembering: “You’ve got to remember what it was about,” he said. “So we don’t do it again.” The former navy man first signed up for service in 1967 in Victoria. From the Prairies, he was living with an uncle who persuaded him that a career of military service was a good job and good experience. But even then, just 28 years after Allied forces stormed Normandy beaches, Walker said stories of the Second World War weren’t the loudest ones to be shared. “The Korean War was more prominent,” he said, noting it was still fresh in the minds of several of his ranking officers. “It made you feel proud,” Walker said about hearing war stories, “because of what they had done.” Like the D-Dayers, he said, “going into the teeth of the guns.” Flight Sgt. James Edward McDonald, 26, didn’t live to see D-Day. He died when his plane was brought down along the Dutch-German border on June 2, 1942. Greenwood lost another son two years later on Valentine’s Day, 1944, when gunner Edward William Bryan was killed in Italy. Six months later in France, shell fragments slammed themselves into the legs of gunner Thomas Forshaw, 25. The young Boundary soldier did get to see home again, but only briefly. He died Dec. 4, 1944, and is buried in the Greenwood Cemetery with his father, Robert, and mother, Agnes. Both parents outlived their son. Robert died in 1949, and Agnes 23 years later in 1972.

In 2005, Grand Forks high school student Tom Isenor visited the grave of Greenwood Second World War soldier John William (Billie) Boltz at the Holten Canadian War Cemetery in the Netherlands. (Photo from the Canadian Virtual War Memorial)

With only one month left in the war, one last Greenwood soldier was killed, Private John William (Billie) Boltz. The middle son of his family, Boltz did not want to see his brothers conscripted. Instead, he enlisted so they could stay and work the family farm. He was sent into active duty on June 15, 1944, just a week after his fellow soldiers paved the way across Normandy beaches. He died securing a vital crossroads near the Dutch-German border, on April 12, 1945. Back home today, the memory of service is carried on at the Greenwood Legion. Just as Boltz was looking out for his platoon when he captured a German truck that April, Walker and the more than 160 members of the local branch look to support their own community. Last month, they gave $10,500 to the Penticton Hospital Foundation, because, Walker said, “We’re all of the age where we’re going to need it.”

John William (Billie) Boltz was killed 16 days before his 26th birthday. (Photo from the Canadian Virtual War Memorial)

Despite an aging membership, the president insists the future is strong. “We’re getting more of a sense of community in the past few years,” he explained. It’s partly what drew him to the Legion when he joined from Kitimat in 1998. “Our main base has always been to be friendly. We greet people when they come in, even if they’re strangers. Give them a feeling of belonging. “Everything’s for the community. Veterans first, but community’s a close second.”

Celebrating 80 years in Greenwood and Remembering D-Day Royal Canadian Legion Branch 155 Greenwood

“You’ve got to remember what it was about, so we don’t do it again.” – Bob Walker, President


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The Name Behind the Street By Anne Gafiuk Dean Jerome Washburn’s name is found on a street sign, connected to a mountain north west of Fernie, plus etched in stone in the cenotaph outside the Fernie Courthouse. Dean was born on February 22, 1921 in Lindsay, California, arriving in British Columbia with his parents, Lenox and Teresa, as a young child. His sister, Lenora Frances, was born a few years later. Dean attended Fernie High School from 1937 to 1941. His strengths were in General Science and Industrial Arts. He enjoyed sports including hockey, basketball, swimming, hiking and skiing. As a teenager, he held jobs as a grocery store clerk and as an apprentice ice operator for East Kootenay Power Co. before enlisting in Calgary with the Royal Canadian Air Force in the summer of 1941.

We lost one of our best pilots when this aircraft did not return for Dean has proved himself to be a great pilot. He had completed 82 operational sorties amounted to 86 hours over enemy territory and was nearing the end of this operational tour. Your son was popular with the Squadron and was fast becoming an ace pilot. He’s greatly missed by his comrades and his loss is regretted by all. The stretch of Mt. Washburn Street is not long. It houses a school and a few homes in the Mountview neighbourhood of Fernie. Mount Washburn, with a glacier on its north side, is the highest peak between the Elk and Bull Rivers, rising to a height of 3033 m (9951 ft.), is about 45 kilometres from Fernie via Sulphur Creek Road and Bull River Forest Service Road. Both the street and the mountain are fitting tributes to a young man from Fernie who, after the war, wanted to return to school to study electricity and continue to fly.

He went through the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan to become a pilot, travelling first to Manning Depot in Brandon, Manitoba. He then worked his way through flying school, taking him to Regina, Fort William, Ottawa, Halifax, and Torbay, Newfoundland before making his way overseas in October 1943. He was first mentioned in the Operations Records for 438 Squadron on July 9, 1944, flying a Typhoon. “Aircraft detailed to attack target, armed with 500 lb. bombs, inst. nose, .025 tail. Aircraft unable to locate target, only one aircraft dropping bombs on woods. 10/10 cloud, very thin base. 4,500’. Intense light flak encountered.” He was well thought of. Evaluations included: “A good Officer and pilot. Should do well overseas. An above average pilot. A good leader with an exceptionally keen pair of eyes. Quick to act in emergencies. An asset to the Squadron. An extremely capable pilot with excellent leadership qualities. Cool in emergencies.” Dean, like the other Typhoon pilots, would fly on average two daytime sorties. In a newspaper article, Dean was quoted about the sortie he was involved with in Holland. “F/O Dean Washburn, Fernie, BC, said there were lots of hits on the gate. ‘The winco’s bombs hit nicely between the locks and a small bridge, but they skipped right out under the bridge. I saw Banting’s bombs hit right on the bridge at Grijpskerk and it blew up with a bright flash.” On Christmas Eve, 1944, Dean, with seven other pilots, suited up for their first sortie of the day. “8 x Typhoon 1B detailed on Armed Recce to Malmedy - Enskirchen - Mayen Houffalise Area. Aircraft patrolled area and attacked scattered Met. in southern portion of area, claiming 2 smokers. F/O D. J. Washburn was hit by flak at 600 ft at F.1303 and spun in. Aircraft armed with cannon only.” Another pilot was also hit while diving in on a tank. Both were believed killed. Fifty percent of Typhoon pilots were lost every 90 days. On December 27, 1944, Mrs. Washburn received a letter from the Squadron Leader, Commanding 438 Squadron. The purpose of the flight was to attack any enemy vehicles that might be in the target area. Your son spotted a vehicle in a small village and while diving and firing upon the target at less than 1000 feet, he was seen to be hit by enemy flak. The aircraft was seen to recover, momentarily, from its dive and then spin into the ground. I regret to inform you that, as no parachute was seen, there is very little possibility of Dean being safe.

High Flight By P/O John Gillespie Magee, Jr. RCAF By Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth, And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings; Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth Of sun-split clouds, - and done a hundred things You have not dreamed of –Wheeled and soared and swung High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there I’ve chased the shouting wind along and flung My eager craft through footless halls of air… Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace Where never lark or even eagle flew.. And while with silent lifting mind I’ve trod The high untrespassed sanctity of space, Put out my hand, and touched the face of God


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“Between the Crosses Row on Row” The Bény-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery is a cemetery containing predominantly Canadian soldiers killed during the early stages of the Battle of Normandy in the Second World War. It is located in and named after Bény-sur-Mer in the Calvados department, near Caen in lower Normandy. As is typical of war cemeteries in France, the grounds are beautifully landscaped. In this cemetery are the graves of Canadians who gave their lives in the landings in Normandy and in the earlier stages of the subsequent campaign. Canadians who died during the final stages of the fighting in Normandy are buried in Bretteville-sur-Laize Canadian War Cemetery. There are a total of 2,048 burials in Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery. Listed here are those Canadians that lost their lives on D-Day. Abraham Dufresne Adolph M. McCormack Adrian Ralph Taylor Adrien Leo Roussel Aime O. Valcourt Alan Douglas Coulter Albert E. Sturrock Albert Edward Hildreth Albert George Smith Albert James Legge Albert James McMillan Albert Joseph Savory Albert R. Stevens Albert Wilson Kennedy Aldie Doucet Alec Ellis Flexer Alexander Bleoo Alexander Joseph MacInnis Alfred Blanchard Alfred Francis Clavelle Alfred Houle Alfred Husak Alfred James Leslie Martin Allen Joseph Kennedy Allen Hamilton Taylor Alvin Milton Rustad Alvin Reeves Alwyn Kenneth Ross Andrew Edison Stewart Irving Andrew Galoway Mutch

Andrew James Finnie Andrew Snedden Antoine Gionet Anton Pelltier Antonio Peter Ladas Antonio R. Vermette Archie Isbister Arthur Bouchard Arthur D. Switzer Arthur Herbert Johnson Arthur McCaffrey Arthur Robert Reekie Arthur Smith Arthur Thomas Jackson Arthur William Strang August John Eckman Bernard Hache Bernard Thomas McHughen Bernard B. Gross Bert Julian Braaten Bill Andrews Daniels Bruce Franklin Elliot Cecil John Graham Charles Arthur Massey Charles Edward Higgins Charles George Newman Charlie Bird Clarence Edward Homuth Clarence Verdun Courtney Clarke Lynson Lawson

Claude Bransfield Clayton Harold Evans Clifford Irwin Jackson Clifford Melbourne Oxtoby Clifford Robert Drew Clyde Sydney Gallan Colin James McAndrew Cyril Allan Mayo Cyril Seton Mersereau Damase Nadeau Daniel Yeo David William Boynton Donald Brock Hilliard Donald Colin McLeod Donald Ferguson Gourlay Donald McKay Barnard Donald Richard Moorhead Donald Robert Bailey Donald Ross Pethick Donald Stalker Donald Thomas Douglas Bertram MacDonald Douglas Philip Reed Earl Roderick Palmer Earl Stanley Sinclair Earl Stewart Kingston Edelore Graham Dennis McGuey Edgar Dawson Butler Edgar John Burns Edoine Landry

Edson Loy Pease Edward John Copeland Edward Joseph Rigley Edward Kirk Garrett Edward Ware Edward Westerby Edward Wladyka Edwin Douglas Boothby Elgin John Annis Elmer Grenville Swan Emerson Robert James Emil Saruk Ernest Arnold Cunningham Ernest Stanley Francis Pickford Ernest Willard Dalshaug Eugene J. Woronchuk Fernand Jean Louis Hains Fleming Ladd Irving Francis Dernier Cosgrove Francis Gordon Radcliff Francis Lionel Peters Francis Maurice Trainor Frank Holmes Frank Robert Gordon Fred Earl Eaman Frederick Bernard Harris Frederick Gustave Weber Frederick William Worthington Garner Fidler Gavin Fraser Rainnie

George Bud McLeod George Dingwall George Edward Dalzell George Edward Purcell George Ernest Murray George Frederick Griswold George Hardman Dayman George Henderson George Henry Cooper George Joseph Brissette George Joseph Carufell George Modeen George Richard La Croix George Spilchak George Stephen Hawken George Thomas Clark George Wilfred Morrison Gilbert Herbert Laverne Harkness Gilbert Thompson Glendon Dwight Raymond Glenn Dodsworth Dickin Gordon Branton Gordon Charles Connaghan Gordon Hubert Ellis Gordon Joseph McBride Gordon Newton Gordon Reed Gordon Ross Coburn Hamilton Arthur McKechnie Harold Nelson Cowan

Harold Stanley Daley Harold Thomas Lewis Harold Tracy Herman Harry Birban Harry Franko Harry Garnet Moore Harry James Coates Harry Osborne Harvey Edgar Jones Harvey Lloyd Walker Hector Joseph Bruyere Henri Joseph Edouard Fontaine Henry Andrew Pockiluk Henry Murray Wishart Henry Roussin Herbert Edward Box Herman Stock Honoré Amos Howard Stolar Hugh Archibald Munroe Hugh Hjalmar Michael Lismore Hugh Macmillan Walker Hugh McCullum Rocks Hugh Michael McCormack Hugh Murray MacLeod Irene Chouinard Irvine Nathaniel Caskey Irwin Archibald Lytle Isidore Louis Falhun Jack Leslie Jackson Jack McGowan Kay Jack Scott Cox Jack Stewart Jacob Rehman James Albert Edward Anglin James Ernest Sawdon James George Broadfoot James Joseph Leask James Kennedy Anderson James Lawrence Stanley Hodgson James Morley Barclay James Patrick Williams James Ralph Main James Robert Catling James S. Talbot

Jean Baptiste Delorme Jean Duguay John Albert Rossland John Archibald MacNaughton John Baptist Louis John Carrwon Coburn John Cecil Gibson John Douglas Young John Ernest Stewart John Ernest Walker John Franklin Robinson John Frederick Belton Kirkland John Gordon Martin John Kitchener Hooton John Leskiw John Lizon John Montgomery Simpson John Percival Downing John Percy Thieme John Pilling John Robert Birss John Showers John Thomas Gunson John Thomas Kellington Ferguson John Thomas Mallaley John Vernon Love John Wallace Atchison John William Dainty John William Hodge John William Wilton McDonnell Parr Jon Gislason Joseph David Dobbs Joseph Earl Cuthbertson Joseph Edgar Roy Joseph Edward Baldwin Joseph Ernest Albert Aubin Joseph Flammand Joseph Guillaume Duguay Joseph John Edward Tompkin Joseph Patrick Walsh Joseph Pelletier Joseph Serwatkewich Joseph Setlak Joseph Simeon Nigh Joseph Vanlergerghe

Kenneth Mervyn Pledgers Lambert Whitfield Wiggins Laughlin Leslie McGown Lawrence Chester Scaife Lawrence Earl Sim Lawrence Osborne Leo Lacroix Leonard James Craig Leonard R. Allman Leopold Thibeault Leslie Abram Neufeuld Leslie Dalton Jenkinson Levie Joseph Landry Linton Charles Armatage Lionel Hache Lionel Ouellet Lloyd Elmer Bishop Lloyd Herman Adams Louis Gerald Brunning Louis Valmont Roy Malcolm Allen MacPherson Marcel Lefebvre Martin H. Reynard Mathew Joseph Desjarlais Maxwell Gilder Adams Medrick Joseph Corvec Melsom Henry Walter Gee Melvin John Dean Mervyn Lloyd Murphy Metro Skwarchuk Michael I. Solodiuk Michael John Makichuk Mikie Wintoniw Morris Campbell Murray Morris Vaughn Bolan Murns Sydney Clouston Murray Oliver Kirby Nathan Louis Berger Neil James MacPherson Norman Alexander McEwen Forker Norman Archibald Hauk Norman Harold Victor Brown Orlando Morris Ellefson Orphila Beauchamp Ovide Maurice Bastien

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Paul Barrette Percy Edward Newton Percy S. Parkes Peter Jacob Martinus Modderman Phile Boudreau Philip Zastre Phillip Alfred Genaille Phillipe (Joseph) Rousseau Ralph Burton Tuttle Ralph Ernest Spencer Randolph Pitre Raymond James Lapierre Raymond Reginald Sparkes Reginald William Thomas Slaney Richard Edward Christmas Robert Bruce Murchison Robert Daniel Tarlington Robert Frederick Moore Robert Goff Robert Graham Burnett Robert J. Stevenson Robert Moirs Gislason Robert Neville Cooper Robert P. Papple Robert Sciberas Robert Walker Thomson Roger Alfred Edward Ashford Roland Ernest Boucher Roland Joseph Proulx Ronald Anthony James Cutler Ronald Norman Brewer Ronald Veldon Cameron Roswell Ernest Toffelmire Roy William Brooks Rupert Clancy Russel Rudolph Isbister Russell George McCallum Russell Kenneth Adamson Samuel Davidson Samuel John Hall Sidney Stephen Ryan Sigurd Norman Huser Stanislas Lebel Stanley Herbert Cole Stanley James Johnston

Stephen Holdstock Steve Prokopchuk Sydney Howarth Thomas Frederick Barker Thomas Henry Davie Thomas Joseph Pierce Thomas Vivian Bird Thomas William Frederick Hackford Thomas Willis Underwood Victor Charles Crabbe Victor George Henry Conway Victor Russell Douglas Garcia Walter Chambers Walter Ernest Fahrni Walter John Dupuis Walter John Klos Walter Leslie Brown Wendell James Clark Wesley Williams Miskow Wilbert Gordon Sears Wilfred Harold David Wilfred John Thomas Birch Wilfred Joseph Nabish Willford Leroy McLaughlin William Adnett Smith William Alexander Warun William Arthur Higgs William Bruce Lewis William Cuthbertson Calbert William Feschuk William Francis Stewart William George Kennedy William George Ritchie William Gilbert May William Gordon Williams William Harold McDonald William James Irving William John Bolster William John Martin William Mervin Dirks William Pangman William Reginald Pettit William Robert McCutcheon


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D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944 -2019

“Between the Crosses Row on Row” The Bény-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery is a cemetery containing predominantly Canadian soldiers killed during the early stages of the Battle of Normandy in the Second World War. It is located in and named after Bény-sur-Mer in the Calvados department, near Caen in lower Normandy. As is typical of war cemeteries in France, the grounds are beautifully landscaped. In this cemetery are the graves of Canadians who gave their lives in the landings in Normandy and in the earlier stages of the subsequent campaign. Canadians who died during the final stages of the fighting in Normandy are buried in Bretteville-sur-Laize Canadian War Cemetery. There are a total of 2,048 burials in Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery. Listed here are those Canadians that lost their lives on D-Day. Abraham Dufresne Adolph M. McCormack Adrian Ralph Taylor Adrien Leo Roussel Aime O. Valcourt Alan Douglas Coulter Albert E. Sturrock Albert Edward Hildreth Albert George Smith Albert James Legge Albert James McMillan Albert Joseph Savory Albert R. Stevens Albert Wilson Kennedy Aldie Doucet Alec Ellis Flexer Alexander Bleoo Alexander Joseph MacInnis Alfred Blanchard Alfred Francis Clavelle Alfred Houle Alfred Husak Alfred James Leslie Martin Allen Joseph Kennedy Allen Hamilton Taylor Alvin Milton Rustad Alvin Reeves Alwyn Kenneth Ross Andrew Edison Stewart Irving Andrew Galoway Mutch

Andrew James Finnie Andrew Snedden Antoine Gionet Anton Pelltier Antonio Peter Ladas Antonio R. Vermette Archie Isbister Arthur Bouchard Arthur D. Switzer Arthur Herbert Johnson Arthur McCaffrey Arthur Robert Reekie Arthur Smith Arthur Thomas Jackson Arthur William Strang August John Eckman Bernard Hache Bernard Thomas McHughen Bernard B. Gross Bert Julian Braaten Bill Andrews Daniels Bruce Franklin Elliot Cecil John Graham Charles Arthur Massey Charles Edward Higgins Charles George Newman Charlie Bird Clarence Edward Homuth Clarence Verdun Courtney Clarke Lynson Lawson

Claude Bransfield Clayton Harold Evans Clifford Irwin Jackson Clifford Melbourne Oxtoby Clifford Robert Drew Clyde Sydney Gallan Colin James McAndrew Cyril Allan Mayo Cyril Seton Mersereau Damase Nadeau Daniel Yeo David William Boynton Donald Brock Hilliard Donald Colin McLeod Donald Ferguson Gourlay Donald McKay Barnard Donald Richard Moorhead Donald Robert Bailey Donald Ross Pethick Donald Stalker Donald Thomas Douglas Bertram MacDonald Douglas Philip Reed Earl Roderick Palmer Earl Stanley Sinclair Earl Stewart Kingston Edelore Graham Dennis McGuey Edgar Dawson Butler Edgar John Burns Edoine Landry

Edson Loy Pease Edward John Copeland Edward Joseph Rigley Edward Kirk Garrett Edward Ware Edward Westerby Edward Wladyka Edwin Douglas Boothby Elgin John Annis Elmer Grenville Swan Emerson Robert James Emil Saruk Ernest Arnold Cunningham Ernest Stanley Francis Pickford Ernest Willard Dalshaug Eugene J. Woronchuk Fernand Jean Louis Hains Fleming Ladd Irving Francis Dernier Cosgrove Francis Gordon Radcliff Francis Lionel Peters Francis Maurice Trainor Frank Holmes Frank Robert Gordon Fred Earl Eaman Frederick Bernard Harris Frederick Gustave Weber Frederick William Worthington Garner Fidler Gavin Fraser Rainnie

George Bud McLeod George Dingwall George Edward Dalzell George Edward Purcell George Ernest Murray George Frederick Griswold George Hardman Dayman George Henderson George Henry Cooper George Joseph Brissette George Joseph Carufell George Modeen George Richard La Croix George Spilchak George Stephen Hawken George Thomas Clark George Wilfred Morrison Gilbert Herbert Laverne Harkness Gilbert Thompson Glendon Dwight Raymond Glenn Dodsworth Dickin Gordon Branton Gordon Charles Connaghan Gordon Hubert Ellis Gordon Joseph McBride Gordon Newton Gordon Reed Gordon Ross Coburn Hamilton Arthur McKechnie Harold Nelson Cowan

Harold Stanley Daley Harold Thomas Lewis Harold Tracy Herman Harry Birban Harry Franko Harry Garnet Moore Harry James Coates Harry Osborne Harvey Edgar Jones Harvey Lloyd Walker Hector Joseph Bruyere Henri Joseph Edouard Fontaine Henry Andrew Pockiluk Henry Murray Wishart Henry Roussin Herbert Edward Box Herman Stock Honoré Amos Howard Stolar Hugh Archibald Munroe Hugh Hjalmar Michael Lismore Hugh Macmillan Walker Hugh McCullum Rocks Hugh Michael McCormack Hugh Murray MacLeod Irene Chouinard Irvine Nathaniel Caskey Irwin Archibald Lytle Isidore Louis Falhun Jack Leslie Jackson Jack McGowan Kay Jack Scott Cox Jack Stewart Jacob Rehman James Albert Edward Anglin James Ernest Sawdon James George Broadfoot James Joseph Leask James Kennedy Anderson James Lawrence Stanley Hodgson James Morley Barclay James Patrick Williams James Ralph Main James Robert Catling James S. Talbot

Jean Baptiste Delorme Jean Duguay John Albert Rossland John Archibald MacNaughton John Baptist Louis John Carrwon Coburn John Cecil Gibson John Douglas Young John Ernest Stewart John Ernest Walker John Franklin Robinson John Frederick Belton Kirkland John Gordon Martin John Kitchener Hooton John Leskiw John Lizon John Montgomery Simpson John Percival Downing John Percy Thieme John Pilling John Robert Birss John Showers John Thomas Gunson John Thomas Kellington Ferguson John Thomas Mallaley John Vernon Love John Wallace Atchison John William Dainty John William Hodge John William Wilton McDonnell Parr Jon Gislason Joseph David Dobbs Joseph Earl Cuthbertson Joseph Edgar Roy Joseph Edward Baldwin Joseph Ernest Albert Aubin Joseph Flammand Joseph Guillaume Duguay Joseph John Edward Tompkin Joseph Patrick Walsh Joseph Pelletier Joseph Serwatkewich Joseph Setlak Joseph Simeon Nigh Joseph Vanlergerghe

Kenneth Mervyn Pledgers Lambert Whitfield Wiggins Laughlin Leslie McGown Lawrence Chester Scaife Lawrence Earl Sim Lawrence Osborne Leo Lacroix Leonard James Craig Leonard R. Allman Leopold Thibeault Leslie Abram Neufeuld Leslie Dalton Jenkinson Levie Joseph Landry Linton Charles Armatage Lionel Hache Lionel Ouellet Lloyd Elmer Bishop Lloyd Herman Adams Louis Gerald Brunning Louis Valmont Roy Malcolm Allen MacPherson Marcel Lefebvre Martin H. Reynard Mathew Joseph Desjarlais Maxwell Gilder Adams Medrick Joseph Corvec Melsom Henry Walter Gee Melvin John Dean Mervyn Lloyd Murphy Metro Skwarchuk Michael I. Solodiuk Michael John Makichuk Mikie Wintoniw Morris Campbell Murray Morris Vaughn Bolan Murns Sydney Clouston Murray Oliver Kirby Nathan Louis Berger Neil James MacPherson Norman Alexander McEwen Forker Norman Archibald Hauk Norman Harold Victor Brown Orlando Morris Ellefson Orphila Beauchamp Ovide Maurice Bastien

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Paul Barrette Percy Edward Newton Percy S. Parkes Peter Jacob Martinus Modderman Phile Boudreau Philip Zastre Phillip Alfred Genaille Phillipe (Joseph) Rousseau Ralph Burton Tuttle Ralph Ernest Spencer Randolph Pitre Raymond James Lapierre Raymond Reginald Sparkes Reginald William Thomas Slaney Richard Edward Christmas Robert Bruce Murchison Robert Daniel Tarlington Robert Frederick Moore Robert Goff Robert Graham Burnett Robert J. Stevenson Robert Moirs Gislason Robert Neville Cooper Robert P. Papple Robert Sciberas Robert Walker Thomson Roger Alfred Edward Ashford Roland Ernest Boucher Roland Joseph Proulx Ronald Anthony James Cutler Ronald Norman Brewer Ronald Veldon Cameron Roswell Ernest Toffelmire Roy William Brooks Rupert Clancy Russel Rudolph Isbister Russell George McCallum Russell Kenneth Adamson Samuel Davidson Samuel John Hall Sidney Stephen Ryan Sigurd Norman Huser Stanislas Lebel Stanley Herbert Cole Stanley James Johnston

Stephen Holdstock Steve Prokopchuk Sydney Howarth Thomas Frederick Barker Thomas Henry Davie Thomas Joseph Pierce Thomas Vivian Bird Thomas William Frederick Hackford Thomas Willis Underwood Victor Charles Crabbe Victor George Henry Conway Victor Russell Douglas Garcia Walter Chambers Walter Ernest Fahrni Walter John Dupuis Walter John Klos Walter Leslie Brown Wendell James Clark Wesley Williams Miskow Wilbert Gordon Sears Wilfred Harold David Wilfred John Thomas Birch Wilfred Joseph Nabish Willford Leroy McLaughlin William Adnett Smith William Alexander Warun William Arthur Higgs William Bruce Lewis William Cuthbertson Calbert William Feschuk William Francis Stewart William George Kennedy William George Ritchie William Gilbert May William Gordon Williams William Harold McDonald William James Irving William John Bolster William John Martin William Mervin Dirks William Pangman William Reginald Pettit William Robert McCutcheon


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D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944 -2019

Honouring the past A labour of love

Handcrafted plaque signifying all the beaches fought on during D-Day (On the morning of D-Day, troops landed across five assault beaches – Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno and Sword.) Ted Ashmore, made the plaque with sand and photos collected by Pat Pierce, a veteran and member of the Fernie Legion Branch #36. Pierce visited the beaches in 2015, and visited the cemetery where there are over 9000 graves of soldiers.

Pierce, a veteran, is also a war history enthusiast. His uncle was a navigator for Lancaster Bombers in WWII. He survived. His cousin, a Bombardier was killed when his plane was shot down in a channel. On the plaque are challenge coins - each represent a different beach/battle. In the centre, the large medal represents Pegasus Bridge (Caen Canal), a turning point for the battle.


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Kimberley to host special D-Day ceremony Military Ames, Kimberley’s veteran camaraderie brother was attacking objectives in Northern France. group and Veteran’s Canada, Calgary, are proud He was leader of the section and his Number Two to be officiating an Act of Remembrance and saw him complete his attack on his target. Number commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of D-Day at Two then turned for home thinking Don would join the Kimberley Veteran Memorial Park and cenotaph him, but for some reason not known Don did not on Saturday, June 8, 2019.There are approximately 60 rejoin formation and was not seen again and is now veterans coming from Alberta and Montana who will posted as “missing”. I much regret that I cannot tell be part of the Service. you more but that is all I know for now. Cindy Postnikoff of Military Ames says that all They would withhold this information for five weeks veterans are invited, while a special invitation is and correspond with the Red Cross to try to obtain extended to any and all WWII veterans in the area. information as to whether Don may be a Prisoner of War.. “All these years later, Canada’s impressive efforts in WWII remain a point of great national pride and we Letters of presumption of death and death certificate will be honoured to have your presence among us,” would follow. Don is Remembered with Honour at Postnikoff said. “We will have priority seating for our Cherbourg Old Communal Cemetery, France. WWII Veterans and the non-ambulatory.The public is Born in Cranbrook, Donald Ross Gill lived in encouraged to attend, and help preserve their legacy Richard Jones Price, right, was one of Kimberley’s fallen in the Kimberley. for generations to come. We expect you will find the Normandy campaign. File courtesy Military Ames. Trooper Calvin Alton Service both educational and inspiring.” Wounded in Caen, France in the province of She commented on the significant history that D-Day Normandy, Trooper Calvin Alton died six weeks later on August 2, 1944 as a result of holds to veterans and family members of those who fought in WWII. wounds received in action against the enemy. “As June 6 approaches, and we are reminded of the sacrifices that were made on He met his wife Barbara Morris in Sussex, England in 1943, (he needed his parents to that day, D-Day, 75 years ago on the murderous sands of Normandy, it is brought to sign for him to get married as was the case then for anyone under the age of 21) he mind that there was more bravery and courage on that day than one can imagine,” died 7 months later. He was 20 years old. Postnikoff said. “The courageous Canadians that went ashore on D-Day in the Battle of The son of Joseph and Jessica Alton. He lived in Kimberley in 1940 at the time he signed Normandy were among the more than one million men and women from our country up, he had lived here for three years and was a painter. There is a mountain in the St. who served in the cause of peace and freedom during WWII. Sadly, over 45,000 did Mary Valley named after Trooper Calvin Alton. not return.” He was from Lamont, Alberta. There is a memorial there to him too. Included in those 45,000 were four men from Kimberley, Gunner RJ Price, Bombardier W.H. Keays, Trooper C. Alton and Flying Officer Pilot R. Gill. He is buried in Bayeux War Cemetery, 30 miles from Caen, Normandy. “These four Kimberley heroes are either buried or memorialized in the province of Gunner Richard J. Price Normandy, France. They are also memorialized along with twenty other Fallen from Gunner Richard Price lived in Kimberley and enlisted in Kimberley, September 13,1939. WWII on the west tower of the Kimberley Cenotaph,” Postnikoff explained. He died on August 16, 1944 of wounds received in action against the enemy. The June 8 Anniversary ceremony will take place at 2 p.m., with the Colour Guard His remains were buried in a temporary isolated grave at Beny-sur-Mer, 7 ½ miles from mustering at the Platzl clock at 1:30 p.m.. Military Ames will also be hosting a dinner for Caen, Normandy, France in the immediate vicinity in which he was killed. (By a bullet to Veterans and spouses or family members at the Elks Hall on Howard Street, following the neck). The grave was temporarily marked with a wooden cross. He was exhumed the service, at 5 p.m.. All veterans are welcome. Seating is limited, so please RSVP to and moved to the Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery, Reviers, France Cindy at 250-919-3137 to reserve your seats. Kimberley’s fallen are forever remembered at the Cenotaph in downtown Kimberley. Four of Kimberley’s Fallen died during WWII in the province of Normandy and are buried in France.

Donald Ross Gill – Flight Officer

Reported missing after air operations and believe killed over Contentin Penisula, France. (this is north of the beaches of Normandy where the Germans were expecting the attacks to take place). He was actually killed Nov 7, 1942, so not actually during D Day. Worked in the Kimberley Mine 1934-1938 then went into Air Force. A letter sent home to Don Gill’s brother from his Squadron Leader reads in part: Your

Bombardier William Keays

William Keays was from Golden, and signed up in Kimberley. He had been a truck driver. He died on July 23, 1944. Killed in action, in the field, against enemy. He is buried in the Bretteville-sur-Laize Canadian War Cemetery that contains predominantly Canadian soldiers who, like the three previously mention, were killed during the later stages of the Battle of Normandy in WWII. Thanks to Cindy Postnikoff of Military Ames for providing the history of some of Kimberley’s fallen.

ALL GAVE SOME – SOME GAVE ALL Military Ames invites you to join us June 8 @ 2:00 at the Kimberley Veteran Memorial Park for an honouring of all veterans and a commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of D-Day. Priority seating for senior and non-ambulatory veterans. Veteran dinner to follow at 5:00 at the Elks. Military Ames Veteran Camaraderie Group – Kimberley & Cranbrook 250 919-3137


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Nakusp’s D-Day connections By John Boivin Even tiny Nakusp has a connection to one of the largest invasions in military history. “Earl Moffat was in the army for D-Day,” says Nakusp Legion first vice-president Ken Williams. Moffat, though from Saskatchewan, lived in Nakusp for 50 years, raising his family after moving there in the mid-1950s. “They told him, ‘You’re going to be driving a jeep on D-Day for a colonel,’ ” says Williams. “Now, this was very close to D-Day. And Earl thought about it and said, ‘We’re going to be coming off this landing craft, they don’t go anywhere near the beach. This jeep is going to be going into the water, and it’s going to stop the engine, because there’ll be water in the carburetor, and the exhaust. “So he outfitted his Jeep with special pipes, and when he landed he just drove off the landing craft and onto the beach, and he was apparently the only one to make it without his officer getting his feet wet.” The funny anecdote can’t mask the real horror and violence of that day. “I asked Earl, ‘Were you scared on D-Day?’” recalls Williams. “And he said ‘Scared? I got out of that damn Jeep, and found cover until we could go up the hill.’ ” Moffat, who passed away a few years ago, isn’t the only connection to the historic assault on Normandy’s beaches. Williams’ father was also an active participant — not from the water, but from the air. “My father was a navigator, and his bomber led its squadron, and their squadron led its group over on D-Day,” recalls Williams.

“I said to my dad, ‘D-Day started at 6 a.m.’ He said ‘Yeah, the invasion did, but the air invasion started at midnight the day before.’ ” Williams’ father did two bombing runs that week in support of the ground troops. “They bombed that night, had a break, ate breakfast, then loaded up again and bombed the next night as well,” he says. He says it’s hard to imagine what these young men went through. “They signed up to go to war because of the excitement. They were all young people,” he says. “Then all of a sudden they had to go and hit the beaches, and they knew a lot of them weren’t going to come back. That’s really something else, what they did. They couldn’t turn around after they were in. But they went ahead and did it.” Williams’ father eventually made it home safely. At least, in body. Like many veterans, the war was something to put behind him. “My dad, when he came home after the war, wanted to forget about it and get on with life,” he says. He recalls when his father went to a reunion of his old bomber group. “I asked my dad if he saw anybody he knew there, but he wouldn’t talk to me about the reunion,” recalls Williams. “And I asked my mom, and she said ‘Are you stupid? His friends were either killed, or are old, or are dead. There was no one there he’s going to know.’ ” For decades, members of the Nakusp Legion have remembered the men from their community who left for that war, and the seven from the community that didn’t return. Now, the living memory of the war is passing on. Nakusp’s oldest vet recently passed away at 102. The stark reality of the passage of time means there’s a danger we can forget the lessons taught by that war, and what led up to it, says Williams. “One of the reasons for the war was economics — and bigotry. It was a whole mess of things, starting with the economy in Germany in the Dirty ‘30s” he says. “So when you see economic situations like that coming around again, it affects us as well. We can’t forget how this happened, and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

Nakusp’s Earl Moffat served with the army during the the D-Day landings.

Earl Moffat’s children remembered their father following his passing in 2016.

The Nakusp Royal Canadian Legion Branch #20 would like to acknowledge and remember all those that fought for and died for our continued freedoms on this 75th Anniversary of the Normandy Campaign: D-Day at Juno Beach.


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Ronald Cox- P.O.W., veteran and devoted husband Nelson’s Ronald Cox was a survivor.

relentless onward push.

He lived through several dangerous missions during World War II, spent time in a prisonerof-war camp, and was among the last veterans of the Canadian Scottish Regiment who stormed the beach at Normandy.

Near war’s end, an explosion knocked him out during a firefight near Cleves, Germany. He awoke to find a pistol pointed in his face — but it came as a relief. “It’s a strange feeling, being captured and knowing you’re safe,” he says. “They wouldn’t harm you as long as none of the SS were there.”

At the regiment’s 75th anniversary reunion in 1987, Cox was one of 300 remaining vets who took part in the D-Day invasion. When they got together again in Victoria in 2012, there were only 14.

He and four colleagues marched into Cleves, then went by train to Hamburg. Placed in a prisoner-of-war camp, he suffered blood poisoning and was given little to eat. After 40 days, with the war in its final throes, prisoners were marched toward Russia — but turned around when the Russian artillery arrived. The Americans then arrived with food and supplies, and Cox’s ordeal was finally over.

The Vancouver Island-based regiment also fought at Vimy Ridge during the First World War and has had members in Bosnia and Afghanistan. Their centennial was a big deal: 800 people came to the banquet and the vets, about 60 from several eras in the regiment’s history, lined up on a field.

Ron and Sheila Cox wed in 1945. Their marriage lasted nearly 70 years until Ron’s death in 2016.

Back home in Nelson, Cox met Sheila

“When they walked down, you couldn’t believe the roar from the audience,” Ron’s wife Sheila says. “It put tears in my eyes.” Cox, who died in 2016 at 96, had been to all but three reunions in the preceding 30 years. Born in Wales, Cox came to Nelson with his family in 1936. He enlisted in Vancouver in 1940 at age 20 initially with the Irish Fusiliers, until the unit disbanded a few months later and hew was reassigned to the Canadian Scots. He shipped out early the following year. At first he stayed at a 200-year old army barracks in England, where a hay-filled bag was his mattress. Yet that was luxury compared to what he endured over the next four years. “I don’t know how he ever made it,” Sheila says. “I’m glad I didn’t know him then.” The D-Day landing site was a well-kept secret until shortly before the attack. “We didn’t know where we were going till we were off the boat,” Ron says. “Normandy? That doesn’t mean anything to us. Just another piece of dirt.” Cox’s regiment was part of the first wave to land, and he was among the first on the beach. His orders were to take out a Nazi pillbox — the concrete bunkers where gunners hid — but a barrage of bullets stood in his way.

Ron and Sheila Cox are seen on the back lawn of their Nelson home in 2014.

“When you’re getting off those boats, everything’s chaotic and the hail of stones they’re throwing at us … It’s like being under a tin roof when it’s raining.”

Horswill, recently arrived from Trail. They were married for nearly 70 years.

Soldiers were told not to stop under any circumstances.

Despite weak ankles and failing eyesight, Cox was active with the local Legion until shortly before his passing.

“Run – they drilled that into you for six months. Even if you can’t walk, drag, because everything keeps pouring in. If the German artillery don’t kill you, some of our tanks will run over you. They can’t take a chance.” By the time he reached his target, it was already destroyed. Cox was in France for months afterward, coping with daily battles, furtive sleep, and a

“They thought the world of him,” Sheila says. “We had a dance and were the only ones on the floor. When we got off, they all clapped.” During an interview, however, Ron admonished a reporter: “I don’t want you to drum me up very much. Not at all.” But everyone else already did.

75 years ago, on June 6, 1944, 14,000 Canadians landed on

Juno Beach, which began the battle of Normandy where 5,500 Canadians were killed and remain there today. Let us not forget the sacrifice and the impact the battle of Normandy had on Canada’s history and our lives today.

We will remember them.

Nelson Branch 51


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Serving through remembering Keeping memories alive By John Boivin “Again this week, Rossland was brought closer to the realization of the tragedies of war with the announcement of the death of Pte. Alexander James Nicol Wright, only son of Mr. and Mrs. J.A. Wright, who was killed in action,” wrote the Rossland Miner a few weeks after D-Day in June 1944. “Like so many of Rossland’s youth, although playing a man’s part to the fullest extent, Jimmie was still to attain the age of manhood which he should have reached July 7.”

Allen Stinson is seen on Remembrance Day in 2017 in Rossland. His father fought in World War II and survived, but fathers and brothers of his friends did not come home. Photo: Betsy Kline

Seventy-five years after D-Day, the feelings of those back home reading those melancholy words still seem fresh to Allen Stinson. “I can still remember, I was 11, in Grade 6 at MacLean school in Rossland at the time,” says Stinson, a past-president of the Rossland Legion. “We were always worried. My pals, my friends, had fathers and brothers being killed over in Europe.” It can be hard for us to remember now, but in June 1944, there was no guarantee the war would end well for the Allies. “No, it was the other way around, Hitler was going to take over the world,” says Stinson. “It was a real scary time. “It was really a sad, scary time for us young kids.” Many of the early Rossland volunteers for the war joined the 109th Field Artillery, out of Trail. They were far away from the beaches of Normandy on D-Day, but they were by no means safe. Many, including Stinson’s own father, were in Italy, fighting the gruelling campaign from Sicily to the Alps. “A number of them were killed, and a number of them I knew,” says Stinson, whose father was taken prisoner of war in a battle. Stinson recalled another young man, Clifford Morris, killed in Italy the year previous, two days before his 22nd birthday.

A Remembrance Day parade in Rossland in 2017

“Let me tell you something about Clifford,” he says. “He lived just across the alley from me. Clifford was a very religious fellow, sang in the choir, could play any instrument you could think of, so did his mother and so did my mother. “He used to build kites for me so I could fly them over Kootenay Mountain. He was something else.” Stinson’s father — a decorated war hero many times over — eventually came home safely. But two dozen men from Rossland died far from home protecting their loved ones. Stinson’s spent decades visiting schools, talking to students about the sacrifice of the thousands of Canadians in world wars and peacekeeping efforts since. “It’s very important for the children of today to know exactly what happened and why they are free,” he says. “We don’t want history to repeat itself, and it seems to be doing that. “This is the important thing for children to realize and respect.” Today, Stinson and his fellow Legionnaires will reflect on that grim but ultimately triumphant day 75 years ago, when 340 Canadians died and almost a thousand wounded. It was the beginning of the end of the Second World War, and Stinson says we must never forget about it. “We keep talking about it, and we should,” says Stinson. “And hopefully, we can eventually stop all of this.”

The Rossland Miner of June 21, 1944 reported the death in action of Jimmy Wright and noted that Cyril De Kusscher took in the Normandy landing.


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Father’s service inspires son to learn still around. However, he said it’s important that we acknowledge their sacrifices. As well, it serves as a reminder that there are still veterans today who have served in different wars that need the support of their communities.

By Phil McLachlan Without tales from the past, history is bound to repeat itself, according to Royal Canadian Legion Branch #81 President, Wray Mills. As the 75th anniversary of D-Day approaches, Mills says it is a time to remember the sacrifices of Canadians, and the significance of this battle.

Younger veterans, Wray explained, don’t yet feel comfor table socializing at the Royal Canadian Legion. He hopes that in the future, this changes.

D-Day, explained Mills, was instrumental is so many ways. He knows this battle well, because he was inspired to learn about it. He also learned a little bit about the battle from someone who was there; his father. Herbert Mills, a veteran of World War II served as a Marine Engineer (also known as a stoker) with the Royal Canadian Navy and was responsible for keeping the engines running. He was called to serve during several battles, one of which was the Battle of Normandy.

Seventy-five years after D-Day, Wray stressed that it’s important to remember. He said that many of the issues that caused World War One and World War Two were repeats of history. And, he said, without a time to reconcile with what has happened, this could happen again. Wray Mills, President Branch #81 Royal Canadian Legion Sparwood.

“If you don’t remember (your history), you’re going to repeat it,” he said.

“On D-Day, he was on the West Side. He was an engineer, he was down in the ship’s bowels keeping things running,” said Wray. His father’s ship sat in the water, given a command to ‘Stand Easy at Action Stations’. As far as Wray knows, his father’s ship was never called into action. However, he doesn’t know much else about what happened that fateful day; a victory that became the turning point for World War II. “Right up to the time my dad passed away; the good times were easy (to talk about),” said Wray. “The bad times, not so much.” “He told me that he was part of the D-Day invasion,” explained Wray. “But it wasn’t until we researched it that we figured out where he was, we found out where his ship was and what he was doing. But what actually happened there, we don’t know. He couldn’t talk about it.” This, Wray said, is why the Legion exists. “The reason they exist is because the people that came back had a hard time talking about it,” said Wray. “Even with myself; I don’t have the experience to really understand what has happened... They (veterans) wanted a place where they could go talk to people who had been there, done it.” Wray said it’s hard for younger generations to grasp the sacrifices of their predecessors, especially now that not many World War II veterans are

Honouring our veterans and the sacrifice they made on the 75th Anniversary of D-Day

“LEST WE FORGET” Branch #81 Sparwood


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D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944 -2019

Trail Legion remembers every day By Sheri Regnier Their stories are harrowing, humbling, and must never be forgotten. That’s why the Trail Legion has always been the gatekeeper of war time accounts from Kootenay men and women who answered the call of duty. Lest we forget. Books, bound in leather, or pages simply typed and filed in folders, forever memorialize the real-life experiences of so many veterans from the Trail area, most of whom are now gone. “It’s important for people to be able to look at these books and see what has happened,” says Gilbert Morrison, president of the Trail Legion. “And hopefully, it will never happen again.” There’s also row upon row of albums that line the back of the East Trail lounge, wherein old Trail Times stories are affixed next to photos of veterans, some dating back 75 years or longer. A community’s history is preserved in these homemade archives that hold nostalgic black and white images of Greater Trail veterans in wartime as well as pictures of soldiers back home in baby boomer years, enjoying — and hosting — so many community events like Robbie Burns Day, or cooking for hungry parade-wavers in Silver City Days. Bill McGuire, a Palm Leaf recipient and past West Kootenay zone commander, agreed with Morrison’s view, stressing how important it is that Legion history, stories and photos, be shared with young minds in perpetuity.

often reflects on the stories and photos that line the walls and book shelves in the Trail hall. “There is so much treasure in here,” said Hogg, a former leader in the Air Cadets. “Last year we had a couple of high school classes come down and we had displays set up for them to look through. It went over so well, we are planning on doing it again this year for Remembrance Day.” Dave’s wife Marcia, who grew up in Powell River, shared a lifelong memory she has of D-Day. “The only childhood memory I have is ‘sh’ [shush],” she said with her finger to lip. “My Dad was in day two of D-Day … he would have nightmares of landing on the beach … and being left on the beach from the day before. He would call out in his sleep, and we’d hear my mother [shushing] him to try to get him to settle down. Looking back now, that was PTSD. But we never talked about it then.” Besides preserving history of local veterans, and there were many, the Trail Legion also organizes commemora-tions in the city, like the 75th anniversary of D-Day, as well as Remembrance Day every Nov. 11. This week, to honour all those who fought, lost their lives, and those who survived D-Day, the community is invited to the Cenotaph, located downtown on Pine Avenue, today at 6 p.m.

“My father was a veteran of the First World War. I have his history and all he went through. It’s impor-tant to me,” he said. “Respect — that’s why I am here. And we must make sure that children remember what happened. “The more children in this country are exposed, the better off we all are, because they are our future.” Mile-stone commemorations, like the 75th anniversary of D-Day today, will certainly be observed at cenotaphs across Canada and Europe. But it’s comforting to know that local stories of the day when Al-lies landed in Normandy, along with memories of other battles dating all the way back to the Boer War, are talked about, kept alive, all year long at Branch 11 of the Royal Canadian Legion in Trail. “My uncle was killed in the Second World War overseas, that’s why I am a member of the Legion, because of him,” Donna Price said. “That’s why I march every Nov. 11. And it means so much to me to have these books in here. To see how young they all are, and they are all so young.” Dave Hogg, a Legion member whose family was not enlisted but was part of wartime efforts in Kimberley,

Trail Legion members Dave Hogg, president Gilbert Morrison and Bill McGuire.

Sheri Regnier photo

The Royal Canadian Legion, Trail Branch #11 will be holding a commemorative ceremony to recognize the 75th Anniversary of D-Day. There will be a ceremony at the Cenotaph on Pine Street at 6 pm on June 6th with snacks to follow at the branch.

Royal Canadian Legion Trail Branch #11


D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944 -2019

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Freedom It comes at a price it. That’s why we remember, that’s why we look at it and say ‘we can’t do that again’,” he said.

By Kimberley Vlasic Freedom doesn’t come free. The 1944 Battle of Normandy is a stark reminder of this, with over 5000 Canadian lives lost from the D-Day landings on June 6 through to the encirclement of the German army at Falaise on August 21.

“The possibility for it to happen exists all the time, there’s always conflict in the world. Canadians have participated in peacekeeping operations for decades, they’ve also participated in conflicts, whether it’s been in Kuwait or Afghanistan or Iraq. Those are not peacekeeping missions, they were military operations.

Canadian sailors, soldiers and airmen played a critical role in the Allied invasion of Normandy, France, also called Operation Overlord, which eventually liberated Western Europe from Nazi occupation.

“The conflicts continue to exist, so the issue is how do you keep a lid on it and not let it become giant? Staying vigilant, remembering the consequences is important, and having people who are prepared to step forward if the need arises.”

D-Day marked the start of this bloody campaign and as the 75th anniversary approaches, East Kootenay residents will remember the price their ancestors paid for the freedom they enjoy today. “It defined WWII, that was the beginning of the end,” said Royal Canadian Legion incoming East Kootenay Zone Commander, Major David Black, speaking at the Fernie cenotaph.

Mjr. David Black, East Kootenay Zone Commander, Royal Canadian Legion.

“WWII was more about having to do a duty, it wasn’t necessarily an adventure,” he continued. “D-Day was more about I think concluding the activities of WWII, it was the time to sort of take back your life; your right, your ability to have a democracy, your ability to control your own life. “It was that time in WWII where I think the Allies basically said ‘OK, it’s time’. They spent two years training – the actual call for the D-Day itself was incredibly difficult because of weather and tides.” The invasion at Juno Beach was originally scheduled for June 5 but was postponed due to bad weather.

Black said commemorations will be quiet and support offered to veterans and their families at events such as the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 36 Veterans and First Responders Dinner on June 2, and activities during Legion Week from 24-30. “Our goal is to remember and not celebrate it,” he said. “If people want to remember something, they should remember that at seven o’clock in the morning, 3000 Canadian soldiers stepped off of landing craft into chest high water facing massive defences, swam through the water, crawled across 300-400 yards of beach to seize and hold an objective. “There were 1000 casualties among those first 3000 soldiers, so one in three. That sacrifice is what we remember, or what we need to remember, that there is a cost and should it happen again would we be prepared to do that again and bear the cost. That’s what people should know and understand, and remember, is that it’s not free. It’s freedom but it’s not free.”

Black said the Allies could not delay any longer. “When you look at the sheer mass that was developed and put into place for that – between 5000 and 7000 ships, 220,000 men. Just on Juno Beach there were over 15,000 vehicles, everything from tanks to trucks to motorcycles, that’s on a stretch that was only five miles wide. You can’t build that up and then turn it off,” he said. “I think the process itself created the pressure to get it done and I think also that there was a desire that it needed to be done. “Stalin was demanding a second front in Europe. They (the Allies) were still maintaining operations in Italy and North Africa. It was a tremendous effort to do that and to make sure that deception plans were in place, so they spent two years on deception plans trying to get the Germans to believe that it was going to come in Calais rather than Normandy. An amazing operation.” Four generations of the Black family have served in the forces, involved in efforts including WWI and WWII. His family’s history of military service inspired Black to join the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery in 1980, where he spent 15 years in the primary reserve, mostly training. When he becomes zone commander in June, he will represent Legion branches from Golden to Creston and the Alberta-B.C. border, supporting veterans and promoting remembrance in the East Kootenay. “There’s an old saying and that is that those who forget history are doomed to repeat

On June 6, there will be no parades or gun salutes to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day in the Elk Valley.

Ceremony at City of Fernie cenotaph.


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D-Day 75th Anniversary 1944-2019

Honouring all those who gave,

Remembering those who gave all

Profile for Black Press Media Group

Special Features - D-Day Anniversary 2019  

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Special Features - D-Day Anniversary 2019  

i20190606105054217.pdf