Help veterans with dignified burial
As we approach this Remembrance Day, the 100th anniversary of the First World War armistice, we reflect upon the fact that the more than 650,000 Canadian veterans of the First World War are now all gone. According to Veterans Affairs Canada ( VAC), there remain 48,000 veterans of the Second World War and the Korean War. These “traditional” veterans are experiencing a very high mortality rate. Fact is, within just a few years all veterans of the Second World War will have passed into history as well.
Established in 1909, the Last Post Fund (LPF) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to ensure that no veteran is denied a dignified funeral and burial, as well as a military gravestone, due to insufficient funds at time of death.
Since its inception, the LPF has arranged for the respectful funeral and burial of more than 153,000 financially challenged veterans.
According to VAC, the number of modern-day veterans (post Korea 1953) stands at just over 600,000 and this year nearly 225 modern-day veterans will require financial assistance with funeral and burial … and the Last Post Fund will be there to assist in time of need.
The Last Post Fund owns and operates the National Field of Honour and Columbarium located in Pointe Claire, Que.
More than 22,000 military funerals and burials have taken place there since this unique cemetery opened in 1930.
The National Field of Honour became a National Historic Site in 2009 and is the only Canadian cemetery entirely devoted to veterans and their close ones.
In 1996, the LPF created the Unmarked Grave Program to ensure that all veterans’ graves are ultimately identified with a proper military headstone. Nearly 3,500 unmarked graves have been identified so far and military headstones have been placed in each case.
The Last Post Fund is supported financially by Veterans Affairs Canada and by private donation and bequest.
For more information or to donate to the Last Post Fund see lastpostfund.ca or call 1-800-465-7113.
Col. (ret’d) Randy Brooks, Regina Brooks is provincial president of the Last Post Fund.