vrijdag 7 november 2008

Glens' sacrifices haven't been forgotten

Letters to the Editor The Cornwall Standard Freeholder44 Pitt Street Cornwall K6J 3P3 Canada

With Remembrance Day approaching I feel a need to express myself about a recent tour my wife and I took with Jolly tours called "Following the Glens 2008". It took us on the route the Glengarry Highlanders followed during the Second World War which my father and uncle were part of. We landed in England where the Glens had trained for a number of years then across the channel to Juno beach where the D-Day invasion took place. We visited a number of Canadian war cemeteries including Beny-sur-mer where my uncle is buried. My father never had a chance to visit his brother's gravesite before he passed away, so this was a very emotional moment.
Receptions were held in just about every town we visited and the people went out of their way to welcome us. In the town of Urville the children came out waving Canadian flags and after the ceremony they sang O Canada and gave us cards that they had made. Some members of the group gave the children Canada lapel pins and they were all very happy. The town's people even invited some of us into their homes. Dr. Jean Pierre Benamou a friend of the Glens gave up three days of his busy schedule to show us around sites of Normandy where the Glens had fought, one of which was the Abbaye D'Ardenne where 20 Canadian soldiers were murdered, including two Glens, Lt. F. Williams and L Cpl. G. Pollard. We made our way up through France with a stop at Dieppe and into Belgium where we visited Ypres and walked into a shop were we met the owner Steve Douglas, director of the Maple Leaf Legacy Project. He then closed up his shop and jumped onto our bus and showed us around the surrounding area of Ypres where major battles took place involving the Canadians during the First World War. We also visited Vimy Ridge. We made our way into Holland and it was the same story. Towns held luncheons for us. People hung Canadian flags from their balcony, streets named in honour of fallen Glens.
When people found out you were Canadian they shook your hand and wanted to talk to you.

This Remembrance Day will be very special as I have never felt so proud of what our fathers, uncles, brothers did.
Proud to be Canadian.

Ray Poitras, Cornwall

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