In This Issue

 

The Powder Horn

 


Volume 12 April 2002 Issue 2

PEOPLE AND PLACES

The Charles Martin Memorial

Last year a prominent group of citizens established a Committee to erect a memorial, dedicated to Charles Martin, his fallen comrades and those who survived to return home from World War 2 to continue to build their community and country to what it is today. Consent was given to have this memorial erected on the grounds of St. Hilary's Anglican Church which is located at the comer of Hurontario Street and North Service Road (directly north of the Queen Elizabeth Way) in Mississauga.

This memorial will be officially dedicated at 1930 hours on 6 June 2002 to which everyone is invited. Further details on this dedication and sunset ceremony may be obtained from Captain Rita Arendz at Moss Park Armoury.

Correction.

Captain Timothy P.V.Nelligan, a Roman Catholic Chaplain at CFB Borden and donor of the Public Service Award Trophy, has written to correct two errors in the September 2001 issue of "The Powder Horn" which relates to the

award of the trophy. First, he states that he was not a regimental officer but a former Warrant Officer and CSM in the Battalion. He is currently serving as a Roman Catholic Chaplain at CFB Borden. Second, the first recipient of the award was Art Gay, Manager of the Regimental Kit Shop, and not Steve Andrunyk as was reported in the newsletter. He was, in fact, the second recipient.

Juno Beach Centre.

In March of this year, ground was broken for the construction of the Juno Beach Centre at Courseulles-sur-Mer in France. The 1,437-square-metre Centre, designed by a Burlington architectural firm, is being built on a 1.5 hectare site where Canadian troops stormed a beach code-named Juno.

Over the past five years, $4.6 million of the $6.1 million cost has been raised through public and corporate donations.

It is planned to have the Centre completed by 6 June 2003 when the Centre will be officially dedicated and open to the public.

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Battalion News
By Lieutenant Colonel J.M.Fotheringham, CD
Commanding Officer

The end of the fiscal year on 31 March 2002 saw a number of reporting milestones being met by the unit while continuing to provide challenging and exciting training for all ranks. The Deputy Commanding Officer and his finance staff managed the budget to within 1% which, given the uncertainty of funding over the year, is quite a feat. As well, the Battalion qualified over 90% of its effective personnel on ELOC (Expected Level of Capability), an annual military skills test.

LFCA (Land Forces Central Area) continues its preparation to provide a complete Reserve Forces infantry company for the Roto 13 UN tour in Bosnia in 2003. Each of the three Reserve Brigade Groups is tasked to provide a formed infantry platoon plus additional personnel such as combat service support and (CIMIC) civilian/military cooperation specialists. The Queen's Own Rifles could fill the majority of the platoon itself with soldiers who are prepared to commit to a oneyear tasking. However, the Brigade allocation of positions is spread across 12 units, so the unit will do well to be able to send a section plus a platoon commander and possibly a platoon 21C.

Recent exercises included Ex Bold Venture in Fort Knox, Kentucky in March in which a Reserve infantry battalion from LFCA conducted live firing and (FIBUA) fighting-inbuilt-up area training. 25 Riflemen attended this week-long exercise, and 40 additional members of the parachute company flew 1,500 miles

to drop onto Godman Airfield, then get back on the plane and return to Trenton.

Upcoming training and taskings include Ex Neptune Strike IV in June, the annual combined - arms amphibious exercise with the Canadian Coast Guard, conducted by the Queen's Own Rifles with participation from several other 32 CBG units. As well, World Youth Days in Toronto in July is expected to bring close to a million Catholic youths to the city, culminating in a Papal Mass at Downsview Park. For summer concentration this August, the Brigade Commander's plan is to conduct training with the Canadian Rangers in Geraldton, near Thunder Bay.

This year the Queen's Own Rifles was tasked with hosting the Toronto Garrison Officers' Ball. Major Erik Simundson, Officers' Mess PMC, was pressed into service as the Ball Committee Chairman and he, along with a strong group of Committee members, was responsible for what the Brigade Commander described as "the best organized Ball that he had seen."

The Guest of Honour was LCol The Hon. B.J.Danson, Former Minister of National Defence and a Queen's Own veteran. The Patron of the Ball was the Chief of the Air Staff, Lgen Lloyd Campbell and the head table included BGen D.A.Pryer, BGen M.Gauthier, Col D. DesLauriers along with their respective companions.

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Report from Toronto Branch
Queen's Own Rifles Association

By Major N.J.T, McCracken, CD

Annual Shoot - 12 September 2001.
Under the competent tutelage of Rob Grieve, Association members who turned out on a cool sunny day at CFB Borden enjoyed their annual attempt to maintain their shooting skills. See the 2001 edition of "The Rifleman" for details.

Remembrance Day - 11 November 2001. A fantastic turn-out of the Regiment gave full meaning to the wreath laying ceremonies at St. Paul's Church.

Junior Ranks Annual Christmas Dinner - 12 December 2001. Dinner was preceded by the presentation of "Thank You Canada" medals to over 30 veterans before a large turnout of all ranks. After the meal was served by the Officers and Senior NC0s, presentations were made to those serving members of the Battalion who had excelled in their training. Congratulations to all ranks for a successful, emotional evening.

Fallen Comrades. Colonel Hank Elliot and I joined Padre Craig Cameron in Creemore to attend the funeral service of Major Ken Prescott, a member of The Royal Winnipeg Rifles company in the Rifle Battalion in Germany in 1953 which was re-badged to The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada. He served with the Regiment until 1959 when he transferred to the Royal Canadian Army Service Corps.

They are Everywhere. While waiting to collect baggage at Pearson International

on 11 March 2002, a security guard approached me because he had spotted the Regimental crest on my blazer. It turns out that Wayne Edwards joined the Regiment in 1954 at age 15. He wanted to be a paratrooper so he transferred to the PPCLI. He claims to have been the youngest soldier to have successfully completed para training in Canada. I invited him to our 6 June 2002 memorial service at Moss Park Armoury on 6 June 2002. I hope he accepts.

Visit to Canterbury Cathedral. While in England, 1 had the privilege of visiting Canterbury Cathedral where 1 visited the Chapel for the Buffs and saw our Regimental Book of Remembrance. It was a moving experience for me.

Upcoming Events

Annual General Meeting. 27 April 2002 in the Sergeants' Mess at Moss Park Armoury. Lunch at 1130 hours followed by the meeting at 1257 hours.

D-Day Memorial Service. 6 June 2002 at 0730 hours in Moss Park Armoury. Breakfast afterwards in the Officers' Mess.

Charlie Martin Memorial Dedication. 6 June 2002 at 1930 hours at St.Hilary's Anglican Church in Mississauga. See details elsewhere in this newsletter.

Warriors' Day Parade. 17 August 2002 at 0900 hours with formation in front of Fort York Armoury.

Annual Shoot. 14 September 2002 at CFB Borden. Details to be announced later.

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Report from Calgary Branch
Queen's Own Rifles Association

by Captain R.E.Ridley,CD

About 600 people paraded on 20 October 2001 in Calgary as a preliminary to Remembrance Day and in recognition of those citizens who have given outstanding service to Canada. The parade was commanded by MWO John Creswell, Chairman of Calgary Branch of the Association. The procession consisted of about 300 cadets representing all Services, firemen, police, Boy Scouts, members of the Queen's Own Rifles and PPCLI Associations and the general public. The Reviewing Officer was The Right Honourable Lois Hole, the LieutenantGovernor of Alberta.

A Colour Party comprised of the three Services participated in a special ceremony at McMahon Stadium before 36,000 football spectators on 20 October 2001. This ceremony took place to bring to the public's attention "The Legacy Brick Campaign" in support of the Wall of Honour at the new Colonel Belcher Care Center being built in N.W.Calgary. The Brick Campaign is to honour veterans and for a $150.00 donation a brick can be purchased on which will be engraved the name of a veteran or as an acknowledgement of the legacy of all veterans. The Association has purchased a brick on behalf of the Regiment.

At the Calgary Co-op annual meeting held on 5 February 2002, retired MajorGeneral Barry Ashton was re-elected Board Chairman. The Calgary Co-op has within its organization 15 major stores which capture a large percentage of consumer business in the city. Our

heartiest congratulations are extended to Barry Ashton on his continued success and his contribution to the community.

On 11 November 2001, in Toronto, Major Art Creighton of the Salvation Army, presented retired Rifleman Jack Sadlick with the Peace Keeping Medal. Jack served two tours in Germany and one in Cyprus with the Regiment. Former members of the 1 st and 2nd Battalions will recall that Major Creighton and his wife Joyce operated the Salvation Army Hostel in Hemer for several years. Major Creighton has retained a keen interest in the Regiment and he and his wife are special friends of retired Lieutenant Colonel Ron Wilkinson and his wife Dorothy who now reside in Hillside Manor in Strafford, Ontario.

The Association was honoured to have retired Major-General John Sharpe and his wife Joan and retired Colonel Dick Cowling and his wife Ilene pay a visit on 13 March 2002. Several members of the Association turned out to greet them at # 264 Kensington Branch of the Legion. Stories relating to the activities of the Regular Force battalions who served in Western Canada during the 1950s and 1960s brought many hilarious and memorable memories.

Calgary Branch is saddened by the passing of retired Captain Rollie Albrecht on 5 January 2002. During his 25 years of military service, he served in Korea, Palestine, Syria and Germany. He was a strong supporter of the Calgary Branch and will be sorely missed. Our heartfelt sympathy is extended to his wife Arlene and their three children.

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Report from Vancouver Island
Branch
Queen's Own Rifles Association

by Jim Carroll

At the General Meeting held on 19 January 2002, it was unanimously agreed that Victoria Branch of the Association adopt the title of Vancouver Island Branch which better describes its membership.

The meeting also approved the installation of a plaque in a pavilion on the Trans-Canada Trail which will mark the posting of the 1 st and 2 nd Battalions in Victoria.

The meeting also agreed to provide some financial assistance to the Juno Beach Centre. Major-General Pitts has been tasked to oversee this undertaking as well as the installation of the plaque on the Trans-Canada Trail.

The membership of the Branch stands at 181 regular members, 20 honorary members (widows), one life member in the person of Major James MacKendrick, and two old veterans Moe Savard and Stan Chernish.

The Branch has two functions per month one of which is a coffee break in Nanaimo at the MGM Cafe on the first Tuesday of every month. The second function is held at the Pro Pat Legion in Victoria on the last Wednesday of the month. This group was started by Cy Arkinstall and me. The shut-ins are driven to lunch which is enjoyed by all in attendance.

Some of the "old boys" who are regulars at these get-togethers are Herb Pitts, Cy Arkinstall, Floyd Lottridge, Bill Fowler,

 
Gord Hryhoryshen, Bill Westfall, Bill Carlton, Jim Duberry, Doc Healey, and Peter Kolbe.

Subject to debate, C Company could always beat D Company in softball. Yes, 1957-1960 in Hemer were certainly the good old days.

National Military Cemetery

Those who served in the Canadian Forces now have a designated final resting place due to the recent creation of a National Military Cemetery in Ottawa.

All current and former members of the Canadian Forces, regular or reserve force, who have been honourably released are eligible for burial at the cemetery.

Applications for burial can be printed directly from the National Military Cemetery Web site at: www.forces.ca/cemetery. For those without access to the Internet, inquiries should be directed to the National Military Cemetery Clerk who can be reached tollfree in Canada at 1-800 883-6094 or by fax at (613) 996-1493.

In 2001, the cost of a grave plot, burial and mandatory National Military Cemetery headstone for one person was approximately $5,000. Costs associated with cremation plots are somewhat lower.

Financial help is available through the Last Post Fund, a non-profit group funded by donations and Veterans Affairs Canada, that ensures a dignified burial of veterans whose estate would not cover the costs.

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Regimental Museum Report
by Captain P.A.Simundson, CD

Rare Presentation Pistol Found

On 13 June 2000, a unique pistol started on its way to the Queen's Own Rifles Museum.

On the night of 3 June 2000, York Region police stopped a car with a number of young people in it. During a routine check of the interior of the vehicle, a handgun was found in the garbage on the floor of the back seat.

At the subsequent court appearance of the individuals involved, the subject of the disposal of this .38 calibre pistol came up and a wise court official suggested that it be returned to a Museum. Why the Queen's Own Rifles? Well, there is an inscription on the side plate which reads as follows:

PRESENTED TO LIEUT.J.DAVIDS BY
THE NON-COM'D OFFICERS AND
MEN OF NO. 1 CO. Q.O.R., AS A
TOKEN OF THEIR ESTEEM AND AS A
MOMENTO OF THE ACTION AT
LIMERIDGE
JUNE 2ND 1866
TORONTO, JULY 1866

With the assistance of dedicated York Constable P.C.Stephen McCullough the transfer was completed.

This marvellous presentation piece is now framed and on display in the Museum,

The original owner, Joseph Davids, joined the Regiment as an Ensign on 19 December 1860 and was promoted to Lieutenant on 13 January 1866. He was

 

on active service with No. 1 Company during the Fenian Raid on 2 June 1866 and was subsequently awarded the Fenian Raid Medal. He retired from the Regiment on 20 May 1871

Louis Riel Artefacts Returned

On 12 March 2002, the artefacts held so long by the Regiment and displayed in the Museum, were returned to St. Boniface, Manitoba as a permanent donation to Le Musee de Saint Boniface. This is the permanent resting place of Riel's remains and a large collection of other material pertinent to him, his life and times.

Dr. Phillip R. Mailhot, the Director of the Museum, arranged transportation through a special Museum delivery service. He has maintained a continuous barrage of letters to convince the Regiment that the St. Boniface Museum was the most appropriate resting place for these artefacts. At this he succeeded.

The Museum has agreed to a simple acknowledgement on the display card that the lock of hair, moccasin, and tobacco pouch were donated by The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada. The handcuffs were previously donated to the Provost Corps Museum located at CFB Borden.

The Riel artefacts, originally donated by Major Needier, aroused controversy whenever displayed. Metis Nation representatives requested the return of these items for a number of years. This matter has now been put to rest.