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Viewpoints

January 6, 2020

HONOUR AND LEGACY

WWII volunteer medal still missing

DAVE PALMER, CD, KSTG, ONTARIO

FILE PHOTO

 

 

ad is it not that the Heritage and Legacy of our Veterans' is discounted and in essence by the ruling of the Chancellery of Honours and Awards established in 1967, says it does not recognize things that happened in the past . . .  yet, they created and issued in recent years, the "Bomber Command" Clasp that is for the CVSM, a medal issued from September 1939 to 1 March 1947. That is clearly permitting the recognition of things that happened in the past.

As it stands, for the tens of thousands of Canadian Veterans who have volunteered to serve since the end of WW II, for those that served before the Chancellery of Honours and Awards elected to negate the service of tens of thousands of Canadian Veterans and to quash any hope of our very own Veterans being honoured for volunteering to serve, they will never be honoured, acknowledged or recognized for their service they will have nothing by way of an honourable means to leave as a lasting legacy for their family. Why is this?

There have been a number of recognitions that the Chancellery of Honours and Awards have created and issued going back to WWII, but to honour our medal-less Veterans seems an insurmountable task. It truly begs the questions in regards to awards . . . and honour, that we as a nation and those that recognize and serve in the Chancellery to embrace our Military History and the Heritage and Legacy of all Veterans' that our Government and our Nation cannot and will not go back to honour these Veterans, tens and tens of thousands that volunteered to serve during the Cold War following WW II, that we as a nation have taken a stand never to honour them. Why is this?

Truly, if we are about honour and the remembrance of Veterans and what they did, have done, do and continue to do in the service of our nation that we have chosen not to remember this specific group of Veterans from the past. To be truthful with you, I find that these Veterans are being discriminated against. 

Recently, because many Canadians no longer no or understand what it means to wear a Poppy during Remembrance Day week, a long-time hockey commentator was fired for his comments about those that don't know why we wear a Poppy. Further, there are tens of thousands of medal-less Veterans that have not a single medal to wear while civilians sport a number of Commemorative Medals. We can't even come up with a medal to honour our Veterans, and we discriminate against those Veterans and their service because they served  before 1967 and even thousands who served after 1967, but as we have no medal to give to Veterans who volunteered to serve such as the petitioned for Candian Military Volunteer Service Medal (CMVSM), most Canadians have no means of identifying our Veterans.

If the CMVSM was created and issued to all Veterans' and our youth in school and our new Canadians and older Canadians, all Canadians could learn to recognize the CMVSM and to be able to recognize the wearer as a Veteran, even if they did serve decades and scores ago.

If we as a nation did a better job at having the CMVSM available for all Veterans, they would at least be recognized by our nation for their service and other Canadians could understand that they are a Veteran and also to better understand what it means to wear a Poppy and what Remembrance Week stands for. 

Sadly, the hockey commentator who lost his job was in frustration trying to say why aren't you wearing a Poppy, and it sort of, you know, it came out not very well and it was his undoing while undoubtedly he was trying to tell Canadians that there is a reason for wearing a Poppy, that our very freedoms are represented by the thousands and thousands of Canadian Veterans who gave their lives for our freedom, so it is a good Canadian custom and tradition to wear a Poppy around Remembrance Week and on Remembrance Day.

As for customs and tradition and the legacy and heritage of thousands of Veterans who did what their ancestors and fellow Canadians did after WW II, they continued to volunteer to serve, but it was decided that their service, it seems is not worthy of recognition by the proposed CMVSM.

Of note: the Bomber Command Bar is placed on the CVSM, but should any more bars be created in the future, there does not exist a volunteer medal, but the CMVSM would fix that issue.

Also, while it all happened before 1967, the Korean War/Conflict these Veterans received a volunteer medal for their service, but the medal wasn't issued until the 1990's and it went back beyond 1967 to honour these Veterans. As indicated, those Cold War Veterans, from 1946-1947 to the end of the Cold War and are medal-less are being discriminated against and unlike their ancestors and fellow comrades who were acknowledged, they are to remain unworthy of any honour. Again, Why is this?

Be well and warmest regards,

God Bless our Veterans and our Troops and their Families,

God Bless Canada.