There’s an important new book out by the Canadian Jewish News. It’s called Northern Lights: A Canadian Jewish History. It tells the history of Canada’s Jewish community through the archives and photos of the country’s award-winning Jewish weekly newspaper.
Medal for George Nashen, 97, a Canadian Jewish WWII RCAF veteran Lieut.-Gen. Roméo Dallaire, one of Canada’s most famous soldiers…
Canadian WWII veteran Max Dankner spent many nights riding his Norton army motorcycle to carry out reconnaissance through German-occupied Europe. The Montreal-born soldier served in the Italian campaign with the 4th Princess Louise Dragoon Guards, and then in Holland delivering vital messages as a dispatch motorcycle rider.
That is why motorcycles played a starring role in an unforgettable surprise which Dankner’s family arranged for his 95th birthday on May 30.
About a dozen Peel Regional Police vehicles, including two motorcycles from the Road Safety unit, and some Peel Regional Paramedic Services trucks assembled Saturday outside the Mississauga home of Dankner’s son. On the driveway, Max and his wife Natalie, had prime seats for the parade.
You don’t have to be a licensed private investigator to find the military records of your ancestors. If you’ve always wanted to learn more about their service during the Second World War, or the First, it’s never been easier to find their official government service records, at least if your relative served in a Canadian military uniform.
It’s taken 10 months of detective work by Canadian and international genealogy sleuths to reveal a happy conclusion in the case of a downed Canadian WWII RCAF airman, Morley Ornstein. What better timing for this to happen than on the same month, 78 years ago, when Ornstein enlisted in the air force in October 1942. After he turned 18, Ornstein, a graduate of Harbord Collegiate in Toronto, joined up.
The coronavirus has forced the cancellation or limitation of most of the world’s highly-anticipated ceremonies to mark the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. For my part, all of my scheduled lectures and public events here in Canada this spring have been postponed or called off entirely, due to the pandemic. However, the milestones of the liberation of Holland and #V-EDay75 are far too important to ignore. That is why I want to pay tribute, virtually, to the vital contribution of Canada’s 17,000 Jewish fighting military personnel to winning the war against Hitler, and rescuing the survivors of the Holocaust.
Harry Colt, Secretary of the Jewish War Veterans of Canada, Toronto Post, awards Ellin a “Flames of Memory” Medal, for her work documenting and publicizing and honouring the 17,000 Canadians of Jewish faith who served in WWII, defeated Hitler, and rescued the survivors of the Holocaust. Her book, “Double Threat”, received constant support from the veterans in this organization, right from beginning of her research back in 2014. The medal and plaque were issued during an event at the Lodzer Congregation in Toronto, March 4, 2020.
I started writing this feature story to find out who “Blackie” was, after some former Camp Naivelt alumni told me about a wooden statute shaped like an airplane wing that used to sit in a place of prominence at the Toronto-area summer camp during the Second World War. The staff built it to honour the memory of a beloved sports director and camp counsellor — who everyone called “Blackie”. He had been a pilot serving with the British RAF, and was killed in action overseas during the Second World War. No one remembered his name, though.
Don Cherry has a long history of supporting Canada’s first responders and military. He tarnishes his work by attacking immigrants, who he thinks don’t appreciate Remembrance Day.
It is a message we should heed during Remembrance Week, when Canadians hold parades and solemn ceremonies at local cenotaphs to honour the soldiers who died in war, and also the surviving veterans. It is not enough to not forget. Be active in your remembrance.