Veterans Affairs Canada

Veterans Affairs Canada

May 02, 2010 09:00 ET

"Canada Remembers the Battle of the Atlantic: Victory at a Terrible Price" (Jean-Pierre Blackburn)

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - May 2, 2010) - The Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture), issued the following statement today regarding the 67th anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic.

"The Battle of the Atlantic was one of the most important and harrowing struggles of the Second World War, lasting six long years. Over the entire duration of the war, many courageous Canadian civilians and sailors crossed the treacherous North Atlantic—under the constant threat of German U-boats and often carrying dangerous cargo. It was a struggle to sustain the vital lifeline of supplies from Canada's East Coast to Great Britain and the European Front so that the fight for freedom and democracy could continue.

In May 1943, the battle finally began to turn significantly in favour of the Allies. In the end, we were victorious, but a terrible price was paid for this victory. More than 4,600 men and women lost their lives at sea.

These courageous Canadians who joined the Navy, the Air Force, the infantry, the women's reserve and the merchant marine to help in the fight against tyranny and oppression must never be forgotten. It is because of them that those who continue to serve our country are free to uphold the noble Canadian tradition of bringing peace and stability to parts of the world that have seen turmoil and upheaval.

Today we honour the sacrifices of those who died in the frigid waters of the North Atlantic and of those who lived to tell the tale. We owe this distinguished group an enormous debt of gratitude for their courage and sacrifice. Lest we forget."

For more information on Canada's contribution in the Battle of the Atlantic, visit the Veterans Affairs Canada Web site at www.vac-acc.gc.ca.

Contact Information

  • Veterans Affairs Canada
    Janice Summerby
    Media Relations Advisor
    613-992-7468