Tales of Animals in War - 2016 Edition

A trip to remember

"Woof! Hey everyone, I’m Gandy the dog. I’m here with my animal friends, looking at our amazing photos. What a summer our Remembrance Clubhouse had. We travelled to France in July. It was a trip to remember!"

"We arrived on July 1st in time for a special ceremony at the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial. Being a Newfoundland dog myself, it was important for me to go there," barked Gandy. "Canadians celebrate Canada Day on July 1st, but for Newfoundlanders like me, it is also a day of remembrance. On that date 100 years ago in 1916, the Newfoundland Regiment fought at Beaumont-Hamel on the first day of the Battle of the Somme. Sadly they suffered terrible losses. There is a special monument there to remember those who died. It is a statue of a caribou, an animal known to many Newfoundlanders. We had a moment of silence and then took a group selfie around it."

"After we left, we stopped along the way to look at some poppy flowers growing on the side of the road and took more photos," purred Simone the cat. "The poppies were gently blowing in the wind as we recited the famous poem In Flanders Fields."

"We then travelled to Vimy. The beautiful monument towers above the area where the Battle of Vimy Ridge was fought in April 1917. Did you know the 100th anniversary of this important event will be commemorated next year?" growled Win the bear excitedly.

"You can see the majestic Canadian National Vimy Memorial in this neat photo I snapped with my trunk. It’s even bigger than me if you can imagine!" trumpeted Ellie the elephant.

"It was designed by Walter Allward, a famous Canadian sculptor," neighed Bonfire Jr. the horse. "The two tall white pillars represent Canada and France. Carefully engraved around the base of the memorial are more than 11,000 names of Canadians who died in France during the First World War and have no known graves."

"If you could fly like me you would have had a great bird’s eye view of all the interesting sculptures that are attached to the memorial," squeaked Squeaker the pigeon. "These symbolic figures represent concepts like sacrifice, peace and hope."

"Wow, a lot of thought went into the design of both the Beaumont-Hamel and Vimy Memorials," woofed Gandy. "If you could create a monument to remember our brave Canadian men and women who served in uniform, what would it look like?"

Date modified: