Legion banquet recognizes Joggins’ Korean War Veterans
© Jamie Heap-Cumberlandnewsnow.com
Vickie Wood (Alfred “Fred” Lorrette), Bruce McKinnon (John McKinnon) and Ashely Mitchell and her father Dara Legere (Philip Legere) were among those presented with certificates of recognition for their family member's (in brackets) service during the Korean War.
JOGGINS-The 2013 Joggins Legion Branch # 4 Remembrance Day banquet was one for the history books. “It’s a special day for us,” stated president Doug Legere. “It’s the right time to do it,” said Legere regarding the legion’s decision to honour the community’s ten Korean War veterans sixty-years after the war ended in 1953.
Like many communities across Canada, the Joggins legion held their annual Remembrance Day service at the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in recognition of its late veterans who fought in World War I, World War II and the Korean War. What made its banquet extra special was its focus on Korea.
“This is the largest banquet crowd we’ve ever had,” stated legion secretary Dara Legere, Doug’s brother. “This year marks the 60th anniversary of the end of the Korean War. At least 10 young men from Joggins served in Korea from 1951- 1953. One of these young men, Pte. Borden Bruce Brown, was the first Nova Scotian, and one of the first four Canadians, killed by enemy fire,” claimed Dara.
Three of Brown’s nephews, brothers Beverly ‘Bruce’ and Allison Stephens of Dartmouth, along with cousin Jim Borden Brown from Fort Lawrence, attended the event. “He was killed nine-and-a-half months before I was born,” said Brown.
A framed copy of the Korean War’s Book of Remembrance cover, and the page that Brown’s named is listed on, will soon adorn the walls of the Joggins legion.
Since July, Dara worked on compiling a ten-minute video honouring Joggins’ Korean War veterans. It included photos of and taken by war veterans Lester Belliveau, Borden Brown, Clifford Brown, Eric Gibbons, Philip Legere, Alfred “Fred” Lorrette, John McKinnon, Austin Vickery, James White and Sonny Terrio.
Of the aforementioned veterans, only Clifford Brown (Calgary, AB) is still alive.
The highlight of the event was Dara’s presentation of Veterans Affairs certificates of recognition to five of the ten veterans’ families that he found information about: Lester Belliveau, Philip Legere, Fred Lorrette, John McKinnon and Sonny Terrio.
“Any family can apply for these certificates of recognition through Veterans Canada,” stated Dara. Philip Legere was the father of both Doug and Dara Legere.
In addition to presenting certificates of recognition to family members of five of Joggins ten Korean War veterans, the Joggins legion and its auxiliary presented a number of service pins, notwithstanding two Poppy Campaign certificates: one to the 1442 River Hebert Army Cadets and one to Joggins volunteer Alma Mills.
In addition, Dara Legere acknowledged the donation of two framed poppy paintings by Sis McKay. McKay’s brother Ronald Dujay, a member of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF), was killed in 1944. Also, Legere acknowledged the donation of a painting of the HMCS Iroquois, a ship that Henson Steeves, who passed away during the past calendar year, served on in the Royal Canadian Navy.
On behalf of the Nova Scotia Nunavut Command of the Royal Canadian Legion, Zone commander Bob Hoeg presented Doug Legere, on behalf of the Joggins legion, with two complimentary copies of Norman Leach’s book Passchendaele.
Cumberland South MLA and PC leader Jamie Baillie was also in attendance. “I try to get out to as many of these services as I can,” said Baillie. “What Canada did in Korea is fight for South Korea, the tenth richest country in the world. Compare it to North Korea, a dictatorship, the worlds’s 112th richest country,” added Baillie.
County Counsellor Mike McLellan thanked the cadets for their work preparing for Remembrance Day; he also thanked the legion for their work in the community.