Discover how Canadians from coast to coast are sharing their thanks with our troops and their families.
Wayne Wouters, Clerk of the Privy Council, extends his gratitude and appreciation to all who served during the mission in Afghanistan, on behalf of all of the Public Service of Canada. Transcript Wayne Wouters, Clerk of the Privy Council
His Excellency Sham Lal Bathija Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan recognizes the exceptional courage and commitment of Canadians that served alongside the people of Afghanistan toward the establishment of peace and security and the collective efforts to help build a stable, democratic and prosperous Afghanistan.
Jamal Magloire of the Toronto Raptors sends a big thank you to the 40,000 brave men and women of the Canadian Armed Forces for their service during the mission in Afghanistan.
Darryl Sittler, former centre for the Toronto Maple Leafs, sends a heartfelt thank you to all who served in Afghanistan on behalf of the team, management, and staff.
A message of pride and thanks from members of the Blue Jays organization
Mark Cohon, commissioner of the Canadian Football League, thanks all the men and women who served so courageously in Afghanistan.
The Governor General of Canada, his Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, invites all Canadians to honour the sacrifies of all who served in Afghanistan on May 9. Transcript his Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston
Major Rhonda Matthews, from the Princess Louise Fusiliers in Halifax, Nova Scotia, served 2 tours in Afghanistan. She sends her thanks to her civilian, international military, and Afghan partners for their cooperation in the mission. Transcript Maj Rhonda Matthews
Brigadier-General Omer Lavoie, commander of the Canadian Army's 4th Division, remarks on the courage, professionalism and dedication of the soldiers who served with him in Afghanistan. Transcript Brigadier-General Omer Lavoie
Capt Jesse van Eijk of the 1st Battalion of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry reflects on all that was achieved and sacrificed in Afghanistan. Transcript Maj Rhonda Matthews
Sgt Rémi Nay talks about one of the key moments of his mission in Afghanistan and wishes us a happy National Day of Honour. Transcript Sgt Rémi Nay
LCol Simon Bernard of the Royal 22e Regiment wishes us an excellent National Day of Honour. Transcript LCol Simon Bernard
Mark Scheifele, centre for the Winnipeg Jets, is proud of all the Forces' members sacrifice and dedication.
Vancouver Canucks' defenceman, Kevin Bieksa, thanks the Canadian Armed Forces' members for all they sacrificed during the Afghanistan mission.
Eugene Melnyk, owner of the Ottawa Senators, speaks with pride of the bond between the Forces and the Senators, and of the mission accomplished in Afghanistan.
Carey Price, goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens, sends a personal message of thanks to Forces' members and their families.
Patrick Laforge, President of the Edmonton Oilers, remarks on the the support Forces' members were offered by Canadians during the Afghanistan mission.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, centre for the Edmonton Oilers, thanks the Canadian Armed Forces' members for their commitment and dedication to Canada.
General manager of the Calgary Flames, Brian Burke, congratulates all the Forces' members on the end of the Afghanistan mission.
The grade 1 students from Holy Cross Catholic School in Ottawa send this message of thanks to the troops.
The grade 1 students from Holy Cross Catholic School in Ottawa sing O Canada
Carleton Ravens basketball team give a big shout out to our troops and all the good work they accomplished in Afghanistan.
I hope that the Day of Honour will re-inspire pride in Canada's sons and daughters in uniform who did so much, for so long, to help Afghans live a life that they deserve, refocus our thoughts on those we lost so they are never forgotten, and help those who have been maimed, physically, mentally or spiritually. I hope the appreciation shown brings peace to those who have not been able to find it since they returned home. In particular, I hope it gives a sense of appreciation to our families, who stood beside and behind us in our darkest days. This day, I'm sure, will be sad, happy, emotional, humorous and difficult, all at the same time. That's normal and what Canada is doing to mark our great mission is exactly right. God bless each of you who participated and God bless Canada.
While I will not be with you on Parliament Hill in person on May 9th, I will certainly be there in spirit. As the Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS) on September 11th 2001, and fully engaged in the immediate and follow-on response of the Canadian Armed Forces to the terrorist attacks of that fateful day, I have a deep and enduring connection to the country's military mission in Afghanistan.
I have great respect for the many serving and retired veterans of the mission, including our civilian and Allied partners, and will be forever grateful for the unwavering commitment. dedication and courage demonstrated by all who planned, coordinated and executed the mission throughout my tenure as CDS and beyond. Canada punched well above its weight during the entire period of its commitment to Afghanistan, and continued to do me and the nation proud when my final duties in uniform took me to NATO as Chairman of the Military Committee in 2005. As my responsibilities grew in Brussels to include the full range of NATO military commitments to Afghanistan, including the transition to combat operations, it was a great source of pride for me to be wearing the Canadian uniform in such a distinguished international organization in which Canada was recognized as one of the most capable contributors to the mission within the Alliance. It is a proud legacy for our military, with Canadians remaining front-and-center during all phases of the mission through to the eventual withdrawal of our forces. Like you and my other successors, I consider it the highest honour and privilege to have been able to command such fine people during this important part of our history.
I therefore wish you a most successful and memorable occasion on Parliament Hill on May 9th. I will be looking East from Winnipeg that morning with great pride and will offer a small prayer of thanks to all the military members who have been involved, including their families, with a special prayer for those who paid the ultimate price in service to our nation.
Whether it is witnessing the efforts of our troops at home aiding the struggle against rising water in Manitoba flooding, the ice relief efforts in Ottawa or abroad sitting playing music for an airborne division detail about to go out on patrol in front of a monument to Robert Berrenfenger and Robbie Short who were two of the first to give their lives in Afghanistan, I am filled with awe at the mixture of bravery, professionalism and humility that our service men and women exercise everyday for our country.
I feel no greater sense of pride and identity as a Canadian than when I think of the sacrifices they all have made over the years and in our present times for all of us.
My father served in the Navy and he was always very proud of that fact and so was I. For me, there is no greater service than for someone to dedicate themselves to their country so that the rest of us can live and work in a safe and secure environment. During my time as a professional hockey player I was occasionally referred to as a hero, yet I wonder if we ever give much thought to what that word “hero” really means. Today, it gives me the greatest pleasure to salute those men and women who, by their actions of service and sacrifice, truly define the word “hero”. Thank you to every member, every hero, who serves as a part of our Canadian military.
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