July 16th, 2024

Legion commemorates 105th anniversary of Vimy Ridge

By Justin Seward - Lethbridge Herald on April 12, 2022.

Herald photo by Justin Seward 20th Independent Field Battery 2296 Cadet Warrant officers Nate Davis and Kiedis Mann perform a reverse arms to pay respect to the fallen during a ceremony at the Lethbridge cenotaph Saturday marking the 105th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.

Members of the Royal Canadian Legion General Stewart Branch No. 4 were joined by the 20th Independent Field Battery 2296 Cadets, the retired RCMP Association and the general public at the cenotaph outside the Yates Theatre to commemorate the 105th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge on Saturday.
“In Canadian history, it’s pretty significant,” said Legion president Paul Brundige.
“When you read about the history of Vimy Ridge and what happened in Vimy Ridge, in military terms, I mean the first time the Canadians fought together and did it. There’s so much military history involved in what is actually still implemented today and basic military tactics – like the walking barrage is still used, there’s still counter battery fire that is still used in the military- that was all developed by the Canadians during Vimy Ridge. So, there’s huge strategic importance to Vimy Ridge that’s still indoctrinated in today’s modern militaries.”
Brundige felt it was important to still recognize the Vimy Ridge anniversaries because that is when Canada became a nation.
“Because we were from all walks of life,” he said.
“We were brought from all over Canada and fought together. We put Canada on the map, we made Canada a country, a nation.”
Brundige noted getting the youth involved, in particular the cadets, was significant because there was a historical and educational purpose for them to see what happened.
Richard Drought, the Legion’s sergeant-at-arms, comes from a long line of military, having spent nine-and-a-half years in the Lord Strathcona’s Horse Royal Canadian Armoured Core, a stint with the military police and infantry reserve with the Grey and Simcoe Foresters.
His father was with the Fort Garry Horse, his uncle was with the Royal Canadian Dragoons, a cousin was with the 8th Canadian Hussars and his grandfather and great grandfather served with the British military.
“It actually means a lot that I am able to participate in something like this in the honour of my history, my family,” said Drought.
Drought went to Vimy Ridge in the early 2000s, where he saw the monument and took a look over the battle site.
“And to look at where the soldiers lived, to me that’s probably the most paramount thing,” he said.
“That really strikes home with me of the members of the Canadian military then.”
Drought also serves as vice president for the RCMP Veterans Association and as the 2296 Cadets’ commanding officer.

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