Veterans Voices of Canada is looking to expand their Flags of Remembrance initiative this fall.
The organization will be raising 128 flags in remembrance of the fallen and missing Canadian Armed Forces Members (CAF) this October in Sylvan Lake, Alberta. The flags will line both sides of Highway 11/RR12, representing 128,000 Canadian soldiers killed or lost in action.
“It will be a very visual experience. The flags are full size. They will be lined up one after the other beside the highway. It is a tribute that never fails to move people as they drive by. Flags snapping in the wind, representing those who gave all,” explained Allan Cameron, founder Veterans Voices of Canada.
For Cameron, the flags are about paying tribute, honouring and remembering military heroes. All flags at all locations will go up simultaneously across Canada, at noon (MDT) on October 17.
Last year was the inaugural year for Flags of Remembrance. Veterans Voices of Canada placed 115 Canadian flags, each representing 1000 Canadian fallen soldiers from 1900 to 2014 along the highway in Sylvain Lake.
This year Cameron and his team of volunteers have expanded their efforts to include flags representing CAF members missing in action. Each flag represents 1000 heroes. The flags are largely donated by businesses, but individuals can sponsor the program with a maple leaf shaped honour plaque dedicated to a vet.
Along with Sylvan Lake, Kelowna, British Columbia, Kingston, Ontario, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island and Amherst, New Brunswick, will be participating in this year's Flags of Remembrance initiative.
Cameron began a career in television as a news cameraman in 1994. Shortly after he decided to speak to his Uncle Perley Cameron about his overseas experience. For the first time, his uncle was prepared to tell his story. Sadly, he passed away before Cameron had the chance to video-document him.
“One of the last things he said to me was, 'Allan, you are doing a good thing, keep doing this. Let youth of today know the sacrifices our veterans made.’ Those words will forever drive me forward,” said Cameron.
Cameron left the news in 2005 and conceived the Memories Recovered Project. He began documenting the stories of Canadian veterans. On June 24, 2011, the organization re-branded to Veterans Voices of Canada and became a registered non-profit.
“Since then I’ve been travelling coast to coast and have documented the stories of over 1000 veterans. Many more wait to be interviewed. My mission? To document our Canadian military veterans on camera for history and education, to be donated to schools, museums and libraries,” said Cameron.
The Flags of Remembrance project is yet another way for Cameron and his team of dedicated volunteers to remind Canadians of the bravery and sacrifices members of the CAF have been making for decades. He invites other communities to connect with him and become a part of the Flags of Remembrance initiative.
For more information as how to sponsor and be a part of Flags of Remembrance please visit the Veterans Voices of Canada website.