An Elgin Park Secondary student’s poster has been chosen from more than 100,000 entries as the winner of a national contest held by the Royal Canadian Legion.
The legion announced 14-year-old Mu Quing Kuang as the intermediate-level winner of their 2011 Colour Poster and Literary contest on Oct. 14.
This is the first time a South Surrey student has ever won a prize of this magnitude, said Percy Smith, vice-president of the legion’s Crescent branch.
“It’s an honour to him, but it’s also an honour to us because (the community) can produce a boy like that and for a young boy to come up with something like this – that not only shows his imagination but it shows how talented he is,” Smith said.
Kuang said he was caught off guard by the big win as the poster was was the second one he had attempted.
“The first one I did was not so good, so I went back and thought of the elements that are important (to veterans) and made this,” he said. “I was really surprised this happened – I never thought it would. I’m really happy.”
Kuang’s poster shows the silhouette of soldier carrying an injured or dead soldier with the Canadian flag at the top, with a trail of blood that turns into bright red poppies.
“My idea is that every drop of blood the soldier bleeds, every effort they give out, we receive peace so the poppy is the symbol of peace,” said Kuang.
The most important part of having contests such as this one is to get the youth interacting with veterans and learning about their history and the sacrifices they have made for the country, said Smith.
“There is no point in talking to somebody about what you did or what it means, but if you can show them and then they put it into words and prose or into a poster, it will show what their feelings are,” Smith said.
“One of the principle things we do now is work to pass the torch onto the young people because they are the ones who are going to take our place.”
Each year the contest is held with the submissions chosen regionally then nationally in Ottawa. Categories include black-and-white poster, poetry and essay.
For more information about the Royal Canadian Legion, go to www.legion.ca