Certificates of Appreciation for Canadian Veterans
8 March 2012
Calling Canada and America’s relationship “the best friendship in the world” Toronto Consul General Kevin Johnson handed out Certificates of Appreciation to 13 Korean War veterans at the Sunnybrook Veterans Centre in Toronto.
The Centre is the largest veterans care facility in Canada and houses 500 veterans -- mainly from WW2 -- however there is a small but important group from the Korean conflict who were honoured with certificates from the U.S. Department of Defense.
Consul General Johnson spoke about time he’s spent in veterans centres visiting his father, a WW2 veteran, and how Americans know where their best friends live, in Canada. He then handed out each certificate personally to the vets, some in wheelchairs, others still spry and able to stand at attention, as well as giving them pins with the Canadian and American flags waving side by side.
The certificates, signed by U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, recognized the men for their service during the Korean War in defense of democracy and freedom and went on to state that their selfless sacrifice halted the tide of communism on the Korean Peninsula and liberty triumphed over tyranny.
Many of the veterans had family on hand for the event and after a group picture was taken, the Consul General was treated to an impromptu tour of the facility by one of the veterans, Douglas Scott. The centre has its own barbershop, library, pool table and there is even a pub in the basement. A similar ceremony of the U.S. honouring Canadian Korean War veterans was held in Vancouver last November.