Canadian vets remember fallen in Korea

Representatives from the Republic of Korea place a wreath at the National War Memorial to honor the Canadians killed in the Korean War.

Credits: GEOFF ROBINS The Ottawa Sun


OTTAWA -- Every year on Nov.10, a group of Korean War veterans in Ottawa synchronize a local Rememberance Day ceremony with veterans in Busan, Korea.

On Saturday morning outside City Hall, vets and their family gathered to remember the 21 young soldiers whose bodies remain overseas.

"About seven years ago, one of our vets thought it would be nice if we turned towards Busan where our troops are buried," said Bill Black, president of the Korean Veterans Association. "At the same time, in Korea, they had a ceremony, because there's a fourteen hour difference. I thought that was very nice way we honoured our war dead. It has carried on and we've done it ever since."

The Korean War, or "the forgotten war" as Black calls it, spanned from 1950 to 1953 and claimed 516 Canadian lives.

"When our soldiers, sailors and airmen returned from Korea, they got off the train and nobody was there to meet them. They were always told they couldn't join the Legion, members had to be a veteran of the

Second World War and First World War -- not like today," Black said.

The veterans also take part in the traditional Nov. 11 ceremony, but the early ceremony that coincides with Korean Remembrance Day is "a better connection we have for the forgotten war," according to Black.

Senator Yonah Martin will be in Korea Nov. 11th to present a painting created by Korean veteran and war artist Ted Zubar, which will be added to the War Memorial in Seoul.

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