Bonfire Jr. meets his cousin

Private P.T. Leachman with the donkey mascot of the Saskatoon Light Infantry, in Sicily, 1943.
Photo: DND ARMY 23177

“Clubhouse friends,” Bonfire Jr. says proudly, “this is my cousin Valerio from Italy. His name means ‘brave’ in Italian. He can help us with our remembrance ceremony.”

Buongiorno, hello everyone,” says Valerio. “My grandfather from Italy helped the Canadian soldiers during the Italian Campaign in the Second World War. I would be honoured to take part in your ceremony.”

Valerio explains how his grandfather pulled wagons and carried soldiers up into the mountains in Italy. The roads were often steep and narrow. It was difficult to get trucks and tanks up the mountains. “Mules were very important.”

“How funny!” Bonfire Jr. says. “Valerio brought laurel leaves from his country that we could use in our ceremony.”

Si!” adds Valerio proudly, “In Italy, laurel leaves are used to honour important people. They also symbolize peace. Bonfire showed me a picture of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, in your capital city, Ottawa. I saw laurel leaves on the Tomb so I know that you use them in Canada as well.”

Everyone thanks Valerio for his great gift! Grazie, Valerio!

Help Bonfire Jr. find the Laurel Leaves!

Ellie's Story
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