Symbol of honour

Theft of Canadian flag hurts most for Vernon family

This letter may seem trivial to some but not to my wife and I.

A couple of nights ago someone entered our property and removed a Canadian flag from our home.

Along with that, they also stole a number of items I guess you could call yard decorations. But it was the missing flag that touched us.

You see, we fly that flag around the time of Remembrance Day to honour my father-in-law; my wife’s dad. He is still very much alive and living in Kelowna these days, although his health is slowly fading.

He is 94 years old.

Let me tell you why we honour him. On June 6, 1944 he, along with around 3,000 fellow Canadian soldiers from the 3rd Canadian Infantry Division, ran ashore at Juno Beach under extreme enemy opposition.

There were more than 14,000 Canadians landing on the beach that day but our dad was with the initial assault.

He was a Lieutenant with the Regina Rifles, B Company.

He landed at around 8:15 in the morning, and immediately came under heavy fire and also began to see many of his fellow soldiers going down, some from his own platoon.

He survived that day and the difficult days to follow.

He was and is a person that we have always admired both for his courage and his values.

So to the person who took our flag, you didn’t just steal a flag, you stole a symbol of honour and respect we have for him and all of the people who serve and have served our country.

We can and will replace that flag and we’ll fly it again next Remembrance Day.  If you’re flying our flag, the one you stole from us, fly it proudly and know what it means.

Our dad was only 22 when he ran up that beach, leading men some of which were older than him.

He deserves and has earned the respect of most Canadians, even those who steal Canadian flags.

Anthony Monk, Vernon