Lieutenant (Ret’d) Maxine Llewellyn Bredt

Lieutenant (Ret’d) Maxine Llewellyn Bredt served while Canada was at war, over seven decades ago, and she has been a relentless volunteer for her fellow Veterans since then.

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Lieutenant (Ret’d) Maxine Llewellyn Bredt

AVeteran of the Second World War, she served with the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps as a Nursing Sister.



“There was a war and I wanted to help.”

Lieutenant (Ret’d) Bredt originally joined the Nursing Sisters for a simple reason; Canada was at war.

“There was a war and I wanted to help, there was a real shortage of nurses so I signed up right away,” she says.

She was one of 93,000 Canadians who served during the Italian Campaign, a key milestone in the liberation of Western Europe. She spent a brief period of time working in medical hospitals in England before travelling to Italy, an experience she hopes no one ever has to undergo.

Maxine Bredt

Maxine Bredt travelled to Italy in 2014 as part of a Government of Canada delegation to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Italian Campaign.

“I spent six months in England, working in a burn unit. There were things that were terrible to see.”

Lieutenant (Ret’d) Maxine Llewellyn Bredt went on to serve in the Montreal division of the Canadian General Hospital, a base hospital that treat those who were wounded or fell ill as they fought their way up the boot of Italy. She served in Italy from the summer of 1943 until early 1945.

“I was there for two years, in Italy, we were short nurses so sometimes I worked 16 hours a day, but it went so quickly you didn’t mind it … it was better for everyone that it went quickly.”

“Thank God the war is over.”

When the Second World War ended she remembers thinking “Thank God the war is over.”

War, she says, is awful, especially when you are losing your own.

After the Second World War, she left the Nursing Sisters in 1946 and returned home to Canada where she worked on Trans Canada Air Lines. She met her husband there, and after getting married, they had three sons and a daughter.

In 2014, Lieutenant (Ret’d) Bredt joined the Government of Canada delegation that travelled to Italy to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Canada’s participation in the Italian Campaign, alongside other Veterans who have served in the Italian Campaign. She had previously returned to Italy in 1959, where she was honoured by Pope John XXIII for her service during the Second World War.

Special commemorative poster features Lieutenant Maxine Llewelyn Bredt

This special commemorative poster features Lieutenant Maxine Llewelyn Bredt. A recent picture of Ms. Bredt in her former uniform is superimposed on an historical photo showing soldiers of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry in the Sicilian town of Agira after capturing it in July 1943.

For her service to Canada Maxine Bredt was awarded several military decorations, including the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee.

Well after her career in the military, she continued to volunteer to help commemorate and improve the well being of Canada’s Veterans and her community of Hudson, Quebec. She was awarded the Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation in 2006 for her extensive work supporting Canadian Veterans’ well-being. She volunteered at St. Anne’s Hospital for 43 years, visiting the resident Veterans. For decades she has been a long standing member of the Royal Canadian Legion’s Hudson Branch where she is an avid participant in annual Remembrance Day ceremonies and legion events.

“I want to say it again, remembrance is very important because it’s another reminder of how terrible war is.”

She was also one of four Sesqui Award recipients for a lifetime contribution of community service with dignity and integrity and has also received the Lieutenant Governor’s Medal from the Lieutenant Governor of Quebec.

“I just wanted to help, I just think it’s a good thing (to do),” she said.

In honour of the 75th anniversary of Canada’s participation in the Italian Campaign, Lieutenant (Ret’d) Maxine Llewellyn Bredt is featured on the official Veterans Affairs Canada, Veterans’ Week poster. This poster is proudly displayed throughout Canada to highlight this important moment in our history.

“I want to say it again, remembrance is very important because it’s another reminder of how terrible war is,” she said.


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