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November 11, 2006

Boer War (1899-1902) 8,300 Canadians served, 277 killed, 252 wounded  

The First World War  (1914-1918)  620,000 Canadians served, 66,000 killed, 173,000 wounded and John McCrae wrote in Flanders Fields.
In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
IN FLANDERS FIELDS the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

The Second World War (1939-1945)  More than one million Canadians served and approximately 45, 300 lost their lives and 54,000 wounded.
The Korean War (1950-1953)  26,000 Canadian served and more than 516 lost their lives and 1,542 wounded.
Gulf War (1990 – 1991) No deaths or injuries.
United Nations Canadian Forces Peacekeeping (1947 – onward) 125,000 Canadians served, 116 killed
In 1988, the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded collectively to UN peacekeepers in recognition of their historic efforts to limit violence and promote peace. A Canadian invented peacekeeping and Canada has always been one of the world’s most committed peacekeeping nations.
Task Force Afganistan (2002 – continuing )  Aprox 2,300 troops stationed presently, 42 killed since start of mission, 35 in 2006, over 200 wounded.
Remembrance Day Websites 
 Virtual Memorial
This site contains a registry of information about the graves and memorials of more than 116,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served valiantly and gave their lives for their country. Included on this site are the memorials of more than 1500 soldiers who died in service to Canada since the Korean War, including peacekeeping and other operations. The site also contains digital images of photographs and personal memorabilia about individual Canadians. The purpose of the Canadian Virtual War Memorial is to recognize and keep alive the memory of the achievements and sacrifices made by those who served Canada in the defence of freedom and so have contributed to the development of Canada as a nation.
  Online State Funeral Petition
 "We the undersigned feel enormous gratitude for the sacrifice made by all the Canadian Armed Forces through the ages in defence of this country and its values; acknowledge the very special nature of the sacrifice made by those who fought in the First World War in appalling conditions and with terrible loss of life; note that only three First World War veterans remain, and urge the Prime Minister that their sacrifice, and all of those they served with under arms from 1914-1918, be celebrated by offering a state funeral to the family of the last veteran of the First World War resident in Canada."

The Dominion Institute will send the petition on behalf of its signatories
to the Prime Minister of Canada on December 11, 2006.

Write to the Troops
 Personal account from a soldier in Afghanistan
Master Cpl. Paul Franklin, who lost both his legs in a suicide bombing: “I could sit and be all depressed . . . or I could accept it and move on.
"If anything, I’ll be remembering that. Even though there might be 42 dead, the numbers could have been much, much higher."

The 39-year-old recalls the Jan. 15 attack that cost him his legs with startling clarity. Master Cpl. Franklin had less than four weeks left on a six-month tour when a suicide bomber drove a taxi into the armoured G-wagon he was driving near Kandahar.

Seven rockets packed into in the cab exploded, killing the bomber, Canadian diplomat Glyn Berry and at least two Afghan civilians.

The blast ripped off Master Cpl. Franklin’s left leg and injured his right leg so badly it eventually had to be removed.

Two other Canadian soldiers, Pte. William Salikin and Cpl. Jeffrey Bailey, suffered brain injuries. A dozen Afghans, including some children, were also wounded.

"I remember everything," Master Cpl. Franklin said. "I remember being blown up. I remember flying through the air. I remember my leg being torn off. I remember when I landed I took my helmet off and my face and my hair were on fire, so I rubbed those out."

Master Cpl. Franklin credits a buddy, Cpl. Jake Petton, for applying a tourniquet that saved his life. Oddly enough, he’d just taught the soldier how to use it three days before the attack.

"One of the things that I’m most proud of is when I was lying in the hospital at the University of Alberta, Gen. (Rick) Hillier called and asked what saved my life, and I said, ‘The tourniquet saved my life.’ "

He also told Canada’s top soldier two other things could help to save lives in the future: a substance that speeds blood clotting called Quick Clot and Israeli pressure bandages, which can be used to stop blood flow.

"Now, every single soldier, when they go overseas, is issued an Israeli bandage, Quick Clot and a tourniquet."

It was a Pakistani suicide bomber who took his legs.

Master Cpl. Franklin has seen photos of the man, slightly younger than him, wearing a full beard and ceremonial white clothing.

"I feel sorry for his family. They come from a very poor country and now their main caregiver has blown himself up. So, in a way, I feel pity for him."


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