30 March 2007

Vimy, Vimy, Vimy

Not surprisingly, as the 90th anniversary of the Canadian attack on Vimy Ridge approaches, news about publications and ceremonies are coming fast and furious. Here are some of those I know of:

The book, Vimy Ridge: A Canadian Reassessment, edited by Geoffrey Hayes, Andrew Iarocci and Mike Bechthold has been published. The Laurier Centre for Military Strategic and Disarmament Studies is inviting anyone interested to the official book launch on Monday, 9 April, at 7.00 p.m., in the Senate and Board Chamber, Wilfrid Laurier University. As the press release notes, the book "began with the premise that there was still much more to learn about the Battle of Vimy Ridge. The collection offers new insights on the battle with articles by" Mike Bechthold, Michael Boire, Patrick Brennan, David Campbell, Tim Cook, Serge Durflinger, Paul Dickson, Andrew Godefroy, Jacqueline Hucker, Mark Humphries, Andrew Iarocci, Heather Moran, Bill Rawling, Gary Sheffield and Jonathan Vance. The launch will also incorporate brief presentations by Bechthold, Hayes, Humphries, Iarocci and Moran.

The Department of History, University of Regina, and the Humanities Research Institute are presenting "Vimy Ridge: Interpreting the Battle 90 Years Later" on Monday, 9 April, at 7.30 p.m., in the Language Institute Theatre (LI 215), University of Regina. As the release states: "The Canadian Corps captured Vimy Ridge on Easter Monday 9 April 1917. This coming Easter Monday, the 90th anniversary of the battle, two historians examine the significance of this pivotal event in the evolution of Canada as a nation." Dr. Ian Germani will speak on "The Military Significance of Vimy Ridge" and Dr. James M. Pitsula on "The Cultural Significance of Vimy Ridge".

The media is reporting that a special ceremony marking the 90th anniversary will be held at Queen's Park, the Ontario legislature in Toronto, beginning at 9.45 a.m. at the Veterans' Memorial Wall, located in front of the legislature. The event will include two minutes of silence, the playing of the last post and speeches by Premiere Dalton McGuinty and others.

Amongst all of the various activities going on in Ottawa on Easter weekend (see the Veterans Affairs Canada and Canadian War Museum websites) one seemingly unique ceremony will take place on the evening of Sunday, 8 April. The media is reporting that at 7.30 p.m. the lights surrounding the National War Memorial will be turned off and an overnight vigil will be mounted to honour those who served at Vimy. The names of the nearly 3,600 men killed in the battle will be projected in light on the walls of the memorial until sunrise the next morning and photographs of at least eighty soldiers who survived the Vimy battle will also be projected on the side of the memorial. A simulcast of the event will be hosted on the project's website.

I'm sure there's much more to come.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for collecting these. I have forwarded the info to non-blog reading friends.