BY ERIN FAWCETT
The Flags of Remembrance along Hwy. 11 have been vandalized.
Executive Director of Veterans Voices of Canada, Founder of Flags of Remembrance and Sylvan Lake resident, Allan Cameron said a committee member and a family were on site getting ready to put up a hero plaque in the name of their family when it was noticed that vandalism had taken place.
“My committee member had noticed one of the flag poles was in the ditch about 20-25 feet away, the flag was off of it and the hero plaque was knocked off of it,” he said, adding there have been no acts of vandalism to the Flags of Remembrance prior to this. “There was a hero plaque that went missing as well.”
Flags of Remembrance, a Veterans Voices of Canada run initiative, sees more than 100 Canadian flags erected for two weeks in honour and tribute of the men and women of the Armed Forces.
The local ceremony took place on Oct. 1st with flags being raised simultaneously across the country at noon sharp in Sylvan Lake, Edson, Ponoka, Okanagon Valley, Kingston, Ottawa, Riverview, Charlottetown and also Cameron’s hometown of Sydney, Nova Scotia.
“There are a lot of people that have put a lot of time on this and people have worked all year round. This is the culmination of a lot of work. For me, this definitely hurts, there is a lot of time put in,” said Cameron. “This is in representation of a lot of people’s fallen family members as well as current family members. For me to have any kind of disrespect this way, it’s tough to swallow.
“It’s not just a flag pole that is being thrown down, it’s not a flag that is being thrown to the ground, it’s not just a plaque being tossed aside, this tribute means something.”
Flags of Remembrance serves as Veterans Voices of Canada’s primary fundraiser. All monies raised through the Flags of Remembrance is used to fulfill the mandate of the organization – interviewing veterans, transcribing interviews, burning and disseminating DVDs and helping local organizations plan and manage their Flags of Remembrance celebrations. In locations where Veterans Voices has teamed up with a local non-profit organization, local funds raised are shared evenly between Veterans Voices of Canada and that organization.
The Flags of Remembrance will be on display until Nov. 13th.