Christ Church honours its vets with poster

 

By Joel Charron

The veterans of historic Christ Anglican Church will always be remembered.

On Friday, Christ Church unveiled a 42” by 48” poster, which is a photo collection of 57 veterans, all past and present parishioners, representing the wars of 1812, World War I and II, Korea and Vietnam.

The veteran’s poster is the brainchild of Terry Hall, a member of a machine gun unit of the Canadian Army Reserve.

Hall said he got the idea to immortalize Christ Church’s veterans after seeing a list of veteran’s names in every church he set foot in.

“Every church I went into there was a list of names of veterans who fought in the war,” said Hall. “Those were ordinary people, just like you and I, who dreamt of having an ordinary life and thought they would go away and actually go to war. That’s where this all started.”

Hall noted Christ Church has a list of 82 veterans’ names that fought in World War II that hangs on its walls.

“When you think about it, it’s a small church in a small town with a population of 4,000 back then and then to have 82 World War II veterans speaks volumes,” said Hall.

War veterans Terry Hall, David Hollinsworth, Earl McWhinney and George Sesto stand by the the poster that features the faces of 57 war veterans, all parishioners of Christ Church. The poster will hang in the church.

Hall said he started the project by gathering photos of his family members who fought in the war then eventually branched out and asked other parishioners about veterans in their family using the names on the list.

Hall admits tracking down the photos was a little tricky. He said the Marsh Collection provided quite a few photos and taking out notices in the local newspapers was also key in gathering photos.

“Bit by bit it all came together,” he said.

Hall said there were some photos he thought they would never find, particularly those of the three Reynolds brother who were killed in the war, however Kay Bertrand told Hall she had photos of the three brothers in an album she was keeping for the Reynolds family.

The poster took roughly five years to complete.

When Hall saw the final product, it far surpassed what he had envisioned.

“It was beyond my imagination,” said Hall. “It was more than I could have expected. I’m really proud of what we did.”

Earl McWhinney, a Christ Church parishioner and Korean War veteran said it was “very well done” and “couldn’t have been done better.”

McWhinney entered the Korean War when he was 17-years-old as an Ordinary Seaman and left as a Leading Seaman. McWhinney also entered the naval reserves in Windsor in HMCS Hunter for five years.

Looking at the photos and names on the poster, McWhinney said he didn’t know the veterans but recognizes some of the names.

McWhinney admits looking at the poster brings back some memories he doesn’t really want to remember but realizes those memories have to be revisited from time to time.

“You have to remember those times because it strengthens you,” he said.

“The veterans leave a legacy that should never be forgotten,” said McWhinney. “In this country, we are very well remembered.”

 

 

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