DIEPPE, France, Aug. 19, 2012 /CNW/ - His Excellency, the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada, and the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, today honoured those who fought and those who died in the Dieppe Raid. They attended a ceremony at Canada Memorial Square in Dieppe, France, just above the beaches where Canadian soldiers landed 70 years ago.
"Today, communities across our country and in France will pay tribute to the brave Canadians who landed on the beaches of Dieppe 70 years ago," said Minister Blaney. "Our mission is to ensure that their sacrifices are never forgotten. Our Government will ensure that the torch of remembrance is passed on to our younger generations."
The Governor General and Minister Blaney were joined by Guy Parent, Veterans Ombudsman; Canadian Veterans who participated in the Dieppe Raid and their caregivers; representatives from the Department of National Defence and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police; and local members of the public. A number of other dignitaries attended the ceremony, including His Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent, Colonel-in-Chief of the Essex and Kent Scottish Regiment; the Honourable Lawrence Cannon, P.C., Canadian Ambassador to France; Sir Peter Ricketts, British Ambassador to France; Kader Arif, Minister responsible for Veterans Affairs, Government of France; Pierre de Bousquet de Florian, Prefect of the Upper Normandy Region; Sébastien Jumel, Mayor of Dieppe, France; Eddie Francis, Mayor of Windsor, Ontario, Canada; and Yvon Lapierre, Mayor of Dieppe, New Brunswick, Canada.
The anniversary was also marked in communities across Canada, including a commemorative ceremony at the National War Memorial in Ottawa, where Royal Galipeau, Member of Parliament for Ottawa-Orléans, laid a wreath on behalf of the Government of Canada, along with General Walt Natynczyk, Chief of the Defence Staff.
Of the nearly 5,000 Canadians who participated in the Dieppe Raid, code-named "Operation Jubilee," only 2,210 returned to England and many of them were wounded. Tragically, 913 Canadians died during the raid. The Canadians who participated in the Dieppe Raid were among the more than one million men and women from Canada who served during the Second World War. The efforts of all of these Canadians helped ensure that victory was achieved.
For more information on the Dieppe Raid, visit veterans.gc.ca. Share your thoughts on the 70th anniversary at facebook.com/CanadaRemembers.
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada
Image with caption: "Veterans Affairs Minister Steven Blaney stands with Kader Arif, French Minister responsible for Veterans Affairs (left); Sebastien Jumel, Mayor of Dieppe (centre); Sandrine Hurel, Member of the National Assembly representing Dieppe; and Canadian cadets and scouts, following a ceremony attended by thousands in Canada Memorial Square in Dieppe, France. (CNW Group/Veterans Affairs Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20120819_C8153_PHOTO_EN_17020.jpg