During the Second World War, of the 12,000 Canadian men and women who served on the Canadian and other Allied merchant ships, one in eight lost their lives while serving their country in the Atlantic and Pacific theatres of war.
Many others were wounded while in service or taken as prisoners of war.
In their memory, the Merchant Navy Veterans’ Day Act was passed 10 years ago in Canada’s Parliament to acknowledge the contribution of these veterans who served alongside our Allied military forces during the war, and helped to preserve the democracy and the freedoms we have today.
Bill C-411 reads: “Throughout Canada, in each and every year, the third day of September shall be known as Merchant Navy Veterans Day.”
This day was selected to mark the beginning of the Battle of the Atlantic and Germany’s sinking of the British passenger liner, S.S. Athenia.
A small number of the veterans who are still living in the White Rock/South Surrey area will be reflecting on their military support service and remembering their fallen comrades this coming Monday, Sept. 3. Each one has some very interesting stories to share with us.
I encourage everyone to remember this special day.
Lest we forget.
Alvin Myhre, Surrey