2016 Veterans' Week Poster
Veterans’ Week 2016, November 5 to 11
The 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge will be marked in April 2017 with special events in France and Canada. The First World War’s Battle of Vimy Ridge was fought April 9 to 12, 1917, in northern France. There, the Canadian Corps won a remarkable victory over the Germans, capturing the heavily-defended ridge that the Allies had previously attempted to take.
The 2016 Veterans’ Week poster features the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in the foreground. This beautiful and richly symbolic monument commemorates Canadians who served during the bloody First World War. Engraved on its walls are the names of the 11,285 Canadians who died in France and have no known grave. Two towering pylons sitting on a massive base represent Canada and France. The monument also incorporates 20 large stone sculptures of figures that represent ideals for which Canada fought, such as truth, justice, hope and peace.
In the background of the poster, “Canada Bereft” is featured in detail: a striking statue of a woman, her chin forlornly resting on her hand as she gazes downward brooding over the graves of her valiant dead. The statue represents those who were left behind to mourn their loss.
An historical photograph taken during the Battle of Vimy Ridge completes the poster’s design. It depicts the advance of the Canadian Corps’ 29th (Vancouver) Battalion across No Man’s Land and through the German barbed wire at Vimy. In total, some 3,600 Canadians lost their lives and over 7,000 more were wounded.
2017 marks the 150th anniversary of Confederation. It is very fitting that this same year includes the centenary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, where many suggest that Canada came of age as a nation.
Canadian National Vimy Memorial and Canada Bereft images: Veterans Affairs Canada
Battlefield scene: Library and Archives Canada PA-001086
© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Veterans Affairs, 2016.
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