Local residents honoured with Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendations


JOHN JANTAK

Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendations were presented to 19 Quebecers during a special ceremony at the Château Vaudreuil Hotel last Thursday to honour their exemplary service to Canada’s war veterans.

Two regional residents were among 19 Quebecers who were honoured with Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendations for their exemplary service to war veterans during a special ceremony at the Château Vaudreuil Hotel last Thursday, September 4. Maurice Carrière from Coteau du Lac and Baie d’Urfé resident Chris Milligan received their commendations from Julian Fantino, federal Minister of Veterans Affairs, and Hudson resident Senator Larry Smith, in recognition of their exemplary eff orts on behalf of Canada’s veterans and their families.

Carrière, a Second World War veteran, voluntarily enrolled in 1940 and served as an instructor in the Corps of Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers. He was honourably discharged and has been a member of the Royal Canadian Legion in Ontario and Quebec for 57 years. Preserving the memory of veterans among young Canadians has been an important activity for Carrière in recent years. He has participated in numerous commemorative events at local schools, including giving talks and distributing educational materials.

Milligan – a former university professor, who along with fellow Montrealer Wes Cross – were honoured for their roles in establishing the McGill Remembers Project which commemorates the men and women from the McGill University community who served during World War II and recognizes the institution’s commitment to the war effort. The McGill Remembers Project also recognizes the university’s participation in other conflict and peacekeeping operations.

“You can’t help but think about the veterans,” said Cross. “That’s what our project has been about. We accept this commendation on behalf of the 9,000 McGill veterans who served in the First World War, Second World War and Korean War, for the stories they have to tell. “World War Two was our first focus to commemorate the Year of the Veteran in 2005 and we’ve continued on in the last 10 years by expanding it to cover Korea and especially the First World War because of the centenary this year,” added Cross.

Both Fantino and Smith also praised the commitment and dedication of the award recipients for their continuing work to honour Canada’s war veterans. “It is a privilege to recognize the selfless efforts of these dedicated individuals who have generously given of their time and energy to support and care for our veterans,” said Fantino. “Their exemplary contributions are indicative of the enormous respect and gratitude shared by all Canadians for the men and women who have served in uniform.”

“On behalf of all Senators, I would like to congratulate the devoted men and women who received the commendations today. They have contributed greatly, and in an exemplary manner, to the care and recognition of Canada’s veterans and their families,” said Smith. The Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendations are awarded annually to individuals who have contributed in an exemplary manner to the care of well-being of veterans and to commemorate the contributions, sacrifices and achievements of veterans.

The commendation is intended primarily for veterans, but may also be awarded to non-veterans. Each honouree received a framed certificate and a pin with a gold maple leaf mounted on a poppy. To date, 97 Quebecers have received the commendation which was created in 2001 by warrant of the Governor General of Canada and with the approval of Queen Elizabeth II.

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