Remembering the veterans
New Waterford Legion hosting D-Day ceremony on June 6
Members of the New Waterford Legion say time is running out to thank the Second World War veterans.
“We only have so many left from the Second World War and if we don’t start acknowledging them now — taking the time to sit down and talk with them — it’s going to be too late,” said George McLellan, a spokesperson for branch 15 legion.
“It’s a repetitive statement to say ‘We’re losing our veterans’ but we are and it’s not going to be too long when we don’t have any left. They are part of our history. If you want to say thank-you, now is the time.”
McLellan said there are six or seven Second World War veterans still residing in New Waterford.
He said the public can spend time with the veterans at D-Day celebrations to be held at the New Waterford legion on Tuesday, June 6 at 1 p.m. Everyone is requested to be seated by 12:45 p.m. A ceremony will be followed by refreshments and entertainment.
McLellan said he remembers a ceremony a number of years ago talking about the last known surviving First World War veteran, John Babcock of Ontario. Babcock died Feb.18, 2010.
“We were talking about him one year and the next year he was gone. Right now there’s a chance to say goodbye and thank-you to our veterans at the same time.”
On D-Day, June 6, 1944, the invasion of Nazioccupied Europe began with Allied armies from the U.S., Britain and Canada landing on the coast of Normandy, France. The Canadian assault troops stormed ashore to face the German strongholds and mined beaches. June 6 was a turning point in the Second World War and led to the liberation of Europe and the defeat of Nazi Germany.
A total of 14,000 Canadians stormed Juno Beach on D-Day. More than 350 Canadian lives were lost and more than 1,000 Canadians were wounded.