Kitchener's LAV III unveiled as modern military monument

News Nov 14, 2017 by Bill Jackson Kitchener Post

A light-armoured military vehicle has been permanently mounted outside the Kitchener armoury as monument to the modern-day soldier, and the Remembrance Day unveiling was extra special for Lieutenant Colonel Mark Poland.

Poland’s brother, Corporal Brent D. Poland, of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment, was killed serving in Afghanistan in 2007 when his light-armoured vehicle struck an improvised explosive device near the border between Helmand and Kandahar province.

“For those of us who’ve lost family members, particularly associated with this vehicle, it’s very meaningful to have a memorial — a lasting monument to their sacrifice,” said Mark, following the ceremony.

“This means a lot to me,” he said, “and it means a lot to the soldiers of the Royal Highland Fusiliers.”

Canada Company, a charitable, non-partisan organization established to help veterans, has invited communities across the country to apply for the decommissioned LAV III monuments to recognize the service personnel who served in Afghanistan, as well as to provide a military monument more relevant to younger generations.

Waterloo and Cambridge unveiled similar monuments during ceremonies last year. Cambridge was the first in Ontario according to project co-ordinator Brian Rainville, Honorary Colonel of the Royal Highland Fusiliers of Canada (RHFC), the region’s reserve infantry regiment.

Rainville said the LAVs memorialize 40,000 members of the Canadian armed forces who served in the Afghanistan mission from 2001 to 2014, including the 158 servicemen and four civilians who lost their lives.

However, Rainville noted that the Canadian Army currently does not have enough soldiers, sailors and airmen to carry out all its missions abroad and said it relies heavily on reserves to augment peacekeeping positions overseas.

“What you’ll see on these parades these days are a lot of young men and women wearing Afghan campaign medals and United Nations’ peacekeeping medals, and they are the new generation of veterans,” said Poland, who served as a blue-helmeted peacekeeper in Bosnia-Herzegovina back in the 1990s.

“These LAV monuments are really an honour to those folks,” he said.

Rainville said the LAV III was made by Canadians to protect Canadians while they carried out their mission to restore peace in governments, half a world away.

“It was and continues to be the workhorse of the Canadian Forces,” he said. “It now returns to your community in the form of a monument to honour your local veterans and our nation’s fallen.

“It will symbolize the completion of the latest chapter in Canada’s military legacy while encouraging a stronger connection between the citizens of your community and our veterans. It will provide a symbolic gathering place to reflect and remember their service and sacrifice delivered to protect our way of life and freedoms.”

Each LAV project is unique to its own community, requiring the effort numerous sponsors, donors and volunteers according to Larry Blundell, a member of the regimental council who was selected as the MC for Saturday’s ceremony.

The total cost of the LAV was estimated between $40,000 and $50,000. The City of Kitchener contributed $10,000.

Blundell said various local companies were instrumental to the installation which required a flatbed truck to transport the LAV from a factory in London, as well as a number of subcontractors who donated stone and labour to pour the concrete for the base.

“And of course a crane had to bring it in and drop it down in place and position it so the gun wasn’t pointing in the wrong direction, Blundell said. “We didn’t want to point it at homes or any schools.”

The hulls and turrets of the LAVs are welded together, and the shell vehicle is mounted in a standard configuration.

Each host community must register and agree to maintain the monument and incorporate it into community remembrance or educational programs.



Kitchener's LAV III unveiled as modern military monument

News Nov 14, 2017 by Bill Jackson Kitchener Post

A light-armoured military vehicle has been permanently mounted outside the Kitchener armoury as monument to the modern-day soldier, and the Remembrance Day unveiling was extra special for Lieutenant Colonel Mark Poland.

Poland’s brother, Corporal Brent D. Poland, of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment, was killed serving in Afghanistan in 2007 when his light-armoured vehicle struck an improvised explosive device near the border between Helmand and Kandahar province.

“For those of us who’ve lost family members, particularly associated with this vehicle, it’s very meaningful to have a memorial — a lasting monument to their sacrifice,” said Mark, following the ceremony.

“This means a lot to me,” he said, “and it means a lot to the soldiers of the Royal Highland Fusiliers.”

Canada Company, a charitable, non-partisan organization established to help veterans, has invited communities across the country to apply for the decommissioned LAV III monuments to recognize the service personnel who served in Afghanistan, as well as to provide a military monument more relevant to younger generations.

Waterloo and Cambridge unveiled similar monuments during ceremonies last year. Cambridge was the first in Ontario according to project co-ordinator Brian Rainville, Honorary Colonel of the Royal Highland Fusiliers of Canada (RHFC), the region’s reserve infantry regiment.

Rainville said the LAVs memorialize 40,000 members of the Canadian armed forces who served in the Afghanistan mission from 2001 to 2014, including the 158 servicemen and four civilians who lost their lives.

However, Rainville noted that the Canadian Army currently does not have enough soldiers, sailors and airmen to carry out all its missions abroad and said it relies heavily on reserves to augment peacekeeping positions overseas.

“What you’ll see on these parades these days are a lot of young men and women wearing Afghan campaign medals and United Nations’ peacekeeping medals, and they are the new generation of veterans,” said Poland, who served as a blue-helmeted peacekeeper in Bosnia-Herzegovina back in the 1990s.

“These LAV monuments are really an honour to those folks,” he said.

Rainville said the LAV III was made by Canadians to protect Canadians while they carried out their mission to restore peace in governments, half a world away.

“It was and continues to be the workhorse of the Canadian Forces,” he said. “It now returns to your community in the form of a monument to honour your local veterans and our nation’s fallen.

“It will symbolize the completion of the latest chapter in Canada’s military legacy while encouraging a stronger connection between the citizens of your community and our veterans. It will provide a symbolic gathering place to reflect and remember their service and sacrifice delivered to protect our way of life and freedoms.”

Each LAV project is unique to its own community, requiring the effort numerous sponsors, donors and volunteers according to Larry Blundell, a member of the regimental council who was selected as the MC for Saturday’s ceremony.

The total cost of the LAV was estimated between $40,000 and $50,000. The City of Kitchener contributed $10,000.

Blundell said various local companies were instrumental to the installation which required a flatbed truck to transport the LAV from a factory in London, as well as a number of subcontractors who donated stone and labour to pour the concrete for the base.

“And of course a crane had to bring it in and drop it down in place and position it so the gun wasn’t pointing in the wrong direction, Blundell said. “We didn’t want to point it at homes or any schools.”

The hulls and turrets of the LAVs are welded together, and the shell vehicle is mounted in a standard configuration.

Each host community must register and agree to maintain the monument and incorporate it into community remembrance or educational programs.



Kitchener's LAV III unveiled as modern military monument

News Nov 14, 2017 by Bill Jackson Kitchener Post

A light-armoured military vehicle has been permanently mounted outside the Kitchener armoury as monument to the modern-day soldier, and the Remembrance Day unveiling was extra special for Lieutenant Colonel Mark Poland.

Poland’s brother, Corporal Brent D. Poland, of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment, was killed serving in Afghanistan in 2007 when his light-armoured vehicle struck an improvised explosive device near the border between Helmand and Kandahar province.

“For those of us who’ve lost family members, particularly associated with this vehicle, it’s very meaningful to have a memorial — a lasting monument to their sacrifice,” said Mark, following the ceremony.

“This means a lot to me,” he said, “and it means a lot to the soldiers of the Royal Highland Fusiliers.”

Canada Company, a charitable, non-partisan organization established to help veterans, has invited communities across the country to apply for the decommissioned LAV III monuments to recognize the service personnel who served in Afghanistan, as well as to provide a military monument more relevant to younger generations.

Waterloo and Cambridge unveiled similar monuments during ceremonies last year. Cambridge was the first in Ontario according to project co-ordinator Brian Rainville, Honorary Colonel of the Royal Highland Fusiliers of Canada (RHFC), the region’s reserve infantry regiment.

Rainville said the LAVs memorialize 40,000 members of the Canadian armed forces who served in the Afghanistan mission from 2001 to 2014, including the 158 servicemen and four civilians who lost their lives.

However, Rainville noted that the Canadian Army currently does not have enough soldiers, sailors and airmen to carry out all its missions abroad and said it relies heavily on reserves to augment peacekeeping positions overseas.

“What you’ll see on these parades these days are a lot of young men and women wearing Afghan campaign medals and United Nations’ peacekeeping medals, and they are the new generation of veterans,” said Poland, who served as a blue-helmeted peacekeeper in Bosnia-Herzegovina back in the 1990s.

“These LAV monuments are really an honour to those folks,” he said.

Rainville said the LAV III was made by Canadians to protect Canadians while they carried out their mission to restore peace in governments, half a world away.

“It was and continues to be the workhorse of the Canadian Forces,” he said. “It now returns to your community in the form of a monument to honour your local veterans and our nation’s fallen.

“It will symbolize the completion of the latest chapter in Canada’s military legacy while encouraging a stronger connection between the citizens of your community and our veterans. It will provide a symbolic gathering place to reflect and remember their service and sacrifice delivered to protect our way of life and freedoms.”

Each LAV project is unique to its own community, requiring the effort numerous sponsors, donors and volunteers according to Larry Blundell, a member of the regimental council who was selected as the MC for Saturday’s ceremony.

The total cost of the LAV was estimated between $40,000 and $50,000. The City of Kitchener contributed $10,000.

Blundell said various local companies were instrumental to the installation which required a flatbed truck to transport the LAV from a factory in London, as well as a number of subcontractors who donated stone and labour to pour the concrete for the base.

“And of course a crane had to bring it in and drop it down in place and position it so the gun wasn’t pointing in the wrong direction, Blundell said. “We didn’t want to point it at homes or any schools.”

The hulls and turrets of the LAVs are welded together, and the shell vehicle is mounted in a standard configuration.

Each host community must register and agree to maintain the monument and incorporate it into community remembrance or educational programs.