Our Community


Comrades:

As you all know we had a fundraiser on Saturday January 14th for my son Steven who has a very aggressive form of cancer. Due to the continuous chemotherapy doctors have placed him on, he was unable to continue at his work. This has put his family in an extremely difficult situation, both emotionally and financially.

Our president suggested the Branch have a fundraiser to help. He asked for volunteers to form a committee to get things moving – a meeting was arranged shortly thereafter. Twenty-one members turned out at the meeting and in a very short time various subcommittees were formed. Our entire executive, as well as various Branch and family members offered to volunteer their time. Groups were set up to take care of food, flyers, tickets, entertainment, finance, prizes, games and clean-up. There was not a lot of time to get everything accomplished by the scheduled date. Everyone took to their tasks with great enthusiasm, and with smiles on their faces. The result of their dedication was the ‘Fund Raising Party’ held last Saturday night.

I was more than surprised to see the number of people who attended. Both the canteen and the lounge were filled. The games were ready to go, the prizes were in place and the food was professionally taken care of. The entertainment spaced throughout the evening worked perfectly. The auctioneer did a great job of selling and entertaining the crowd. In short, the committees had done an outstanding job.

The night was so important to me and my family. The outcome of all of this was a Legion Branch coming together to support a member in need. To use a word not familiar to my vocabulary, the evening was truly miraculous. To raise such a large sum of money was beyond my wildest dreams. There are no words I can say to express my gratitude. All you people, who made this possible, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

 

The Burns Family


 

 

This poem was entered in the Poem Category for the Youth Education Program at Branch 345.

Please take the time to read this amazing poem.

It won 2nd Place at the Provincial level and is amazing.

Congratulations to Lin Han from G.A Brown Middle School.

 

 

Only Two Minutes

For two minutes,

On the eleventh day, of the eleventh month, we take a moment,

To remember the sacrifices,

Each soldier has made; two minutes, so silent.

But only for two minutes.

For two minutes,

We try to imagine the pain and misery, each soldier has been through,

Each bomb and gun fire that echoed in their ear,

With eyes that filled with a terrible view.

But only for two minutes.

For two minutes,

Our mind fills with blood and gore,

We picture all the men and women,

Who’ve battled and fought for our freedom, in war.

But only for two minutes

For two minutes,

We think about all the soldiers who’ve gone missing,

Who were shot and killed; who were held hostage,

All the broken hearts, internally bleeding.

But only for two minutes.

For two minutes,

We grieve for families that were ripped apart by war,

Children – fatherless; wives – husbandless,

Families with permanent scars, that can’t restore

But only for two minutes.

For two minutes,

We respect all they have done,

We acknowledge their sacrifices,

So that today we have freedom and fun.

But only for two minutes

They gave up their entire lives

While we give up only two minutes

By Lin Han

Gordon A. Brown Middle School, Toronto, Ontario

 

______________________________________________________________________

Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery
On June 6, 1944, now known to history as D-Day, Operation Overlord, the long-awaited invasion of Northwest Europe, began with Allied landings on the Cost of Normandy.

The 3rd Division and the 2nd Armoured Brigade were Canada’s major ground contribution to the D-Day landings. These were representative of the whole nation: three of the infantry battalions came from Ontario, one from Quebec, three from the Western provinces and two from the Maritimes; the artillery, engineers, signals and service units were equally diverse in origins. The three regiments of the armoured brigade regiments represented Ontario, Manitoba and Quebec.

Under command of the British Second Army, supported by an impressive array of firepower from artillery, rocket-firing landing craft and naval guns, the Canadians stormed ashore at “Juno” beach, in the centre of the British sector, through rough water, beach obstacles, wire, mines and gunfire. By nightfall they had secured a beachhead, which, although short of the planned objectives, was firm enough to withstand enemy counter-attacks. In the days that followed the lodgement was strengthened and enlarged until by 11 June, the bridgehead was deemed secure enough to accommodate new formations that were to pour ashore in the next phase.

The cost in lives had been high, though not as high as had been estimated, and certainly not as high as it would have been without Dieppe. On D-Day alone, Canada suffered almost a thousand casualties, of whom 340 were killed or died of wounds. The list lengthened during the following days as the Germans sought desperately to drive the invaders out.

The men who fell on the beaches and in the bitter bridgehead battles are buried in Beny-sur-Mer Canadian War Cemetery which, despite its name, is near the village of Reviers. The cemetery contains 2,049 headstones enclosed by pines and maples. These mark the dead of the 3rd Division and the graves of 15 airmen. The mayor and people of Reviers take a special interest in the cemetery for, although it bears another name, they feel it to be their own. Fine hedges decorate the entrance, and the flanking registry buildings have platforms from which the visitor can see the whole area and appreciate the skill and devotion that has gone into the planning and design of this superb cemetery.

________________________________________________________________________________

 

Dear Branch 345

I would just like to take the time to say thank you to your branch for providing a lovely wreath for our most recent trip to Normandy. I contacted your branch first through Krim and later another fellow who is a retired teacher who was kind enough to drop off the wreath at our school—Riverdale C.I.. We had a great trip that took us first to Bretagne/Brittany and then to Normandy. We visited Arrowmanches, the Juno Beach Centre and the cemetery in beny sur mer. It was a very powerful day for all of the students and the dedication of the wreath you provided gave us not only a focus but also a way to personalize the experience. It is a trip the kids will remember for a lifetime and the emotional moments they spent in Normandy truly will help them embrace our strong military traditions and of course the great sacrifice of the men who died during the D-Day invasions. Please find attached a few photos from our journey.

All the best

Warren Fick on behalf of Riverdale Collegiate’s First Exchange trip to France.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

81 Peard Rd Toronto, ON M4B 1T8 (416) 759 5291