November 9, 2022. On November 11, we will remember the memories and sacrifices made by those who did their best to answer the call to fight for freedom.
Those who sacrificed their lives in war are not just names on a Cenotaph or buried in a war grave. They were children, siblings, spouses, parents, friends… Each one has a story that can be told and they should not be forgotten. That’s been the goal of this research blog over the years.
…Burnie Reynaert still remembers laying a wreath as a young girl….
Burnie Reynaert still remembers her uncle Lewis Wilkieson MARSH of Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia, one of 5 soldiers from the North Nova Scotia Highlanders Regiment who drowned in a tragic accident on the Leda River during the Battle of Leer in Germany on April 28, 1945. (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2021/05/18/on-the-war-memorial-trail-a-tragic-drowning-on-the-leda-river-in-germany-part-4/)
Last year, Burnie shared the telegrams her grandmother received, first saying that Lewis was believed to have drowned, and then the awful confirmation that he had died. (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2021/11/10/on-the-war-memorial-trail-linking-the-past-with-the-present/)
This year, Burnie shared a photo of herself as a young girl, placing a wreath in honour of her uncle.
Even today, Burnie has not forgotten her uncle’s sacrifice.
…We visited the memorial in Saulnierville, Nova Scotia…
This fall, while in Nova Scotia, we visited the memorial in Saulnierville. Two soldiers that Pieter researched are listed on this monument. Both are buried in the Canadian War Cemetery in Holten.
Joseph ‘Ambroise’ COMEAU, from Lower Saulnierville, Nova Scotia, was one of 5 soldiers from the North Nova Scotia Highlanders Regiment who drowned in a tragic accident on the Leda River during the Battle of Leer in Germany on April 28, 1945. (See https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2021/05/17/on-the-war-memorial-trail-a-tragic-drowning-on-the-leda-river-in-germany-part-3/ and https://onthewarmemorialtrail.com/2021/11/10/on-the-war-memorial-trail-linking-the-past-with-the-present/)
Joseph E. ROBICHAU, from Meteghan, Nova Scotia, lost his life on April 14, 1945 near Deventer, The Netherlands, while serving with the Royal 22nd Regiment. His story will be told in an upcoming posting.
…Pieter interviewed by the Winnipeg Free Press….
Pieter was interviewed by Kevin Rollason of the Winnipeg Free Press, about his request for help in finding photos of 12 soldiers from Manitoba who are buried in The Netherlands. The article, ‘A name without a face’, ran online on November 4, 2022 and in the print edition on November 5, 2022. As of the date of this posting, the photo wish list remains unfulfilled. Here is the link in case you can help: https://www.winnipegfreepress.com/local/2022/11/04/a-name-without-a-face
…Pieter interviewed on CTV Atlantic News At 5….
On Monday, November 7, 2022, Pieter was interviewed by Ceilidh Millar of CTV Atlantic News At 5 about the search for 4 soldiers of the North Nova Scotia Highlanders Regiment who died during the Battle of Bienen on March 25, 2022.
You can read the article and watch the video. See P.E.I. man identifying Canadian soldiers in the Netherlands | CTV News https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/maritime-man-appealing-to-public-for-help-identifying-lost-canadian-soldiers-1.6143236
The names of the soldiers mentioned in the interview were:
- Donald John MACKINNON, born October 8, 1925 in Sydney, Nova Scotia, son of Joseph and Catherine ( nee MacNeil) MacKinnon.
- Austin Havelock MUNROE, born December 2, 1919 in Little Dover, Nova Scotia, son of Edward and Minnie Munroe. He was married to Ana Elizabeth (nee Barry) Munroe.
- John Lewis WALLACE, born June 1, 1921 in Canning, Nova Scotia., son of William Edward and Amy Louise Wallace. He was married to Doris Avanelle (nee Crowe) Wallace. They had one son, William Lewis Wallace.
- Louis Allan SEXTON, son of James E. and Ethel Sexton of Maria Est, Bonaventure County in Quebec, is also still on the photo wish list.
Incredibly, shortly after the broadcast we were contacted by Irene Doyle of Campbelltown, New Brunswick, who sent us a photo of Louis Sexton, which came from the Bay Chaleur Military Museum website. The three soldiers from Nova Scotia are still on the photo wish list!
… ‘Il Silenzio’ to remember the fallen….
It seems fitting to end this Remembrance Week posting with music. In a Dutch Liberation Day concert in Maastricht, The Netherlands, 13-year-old Melissa Venema, backed by André Rieu and his orchestra (the Royal Orchestra of the Netherlands), was the trumpet soloist in a haunting rendition of ‘Il Silenzio’ (The Silence). This piece, by Italian composer Nino Rossi, is based upon what we know as The Last Post. Watch
Thank you to Burnie Reynaert for sharing a childhood photo, Irene Doyle for sending the photo of Louis Sexton, Kevin Rollason and the Winnipeg Free Press for publicizing the photo search request of soldiers from Manitoba, and to Ceilidh Millar, Jayson Baxter, and CTV Atlantic News At 5 for publicizing the photo search of soldiers killed in Bienen, Germany.
If you can help with these photo requests, or have a story to tell, please let Pieter know. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, comment on the blog, or send a tweet to @researchmemori1.
…Want to follow our research?….
Daria’s book ‘No Soldier Buried Overseas Should Ever Be Forgotten‘ is available in print and e-book formats. Net proceeds of book sales help support research costs and the cost of maintaining this blog. For more information on the book, please see https://nosoldierforgotten.com/
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© Daria Valkenburg