Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

July 17, 2009 11:57 ET

Left, Left, Left, Right, Left... Canadian Forces Contingent Departs for 93rd Nijmegen Marches

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 17, 2009) - A 270-strong Canadian Forces (CF) contingent left Canada today to take part in the 93rd Internationale Vierdaagse Afstandmarsen Nijmegen (International Four-Day Marches Nijmegen), a prestigious long-distance marching event in the Netherlands. Canadian military teams have marched at Nijmegen every year since 1952.

Between July 21 and July 24, the Canadian Forces marchers will cover 160 km through the Dutch countryside and cities, each carrying a pack weighing at least 10 kg. They are supported through their journey by a medical and logistics staff and accompanied this year by the 35-member Royal Canadian Artillery Band from the Edmonton garrison.

"The Nijmegen Marches is a great example of Dutch-Canadian friendship and co-operation," said the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway. "Canadian Forces participation in this event highlights Canada's close connection to the Netherlands. This can be seen in the collaboration of Canadian and Dutch soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen working to bring freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law to Afghanistan. I salute all those taking part in this year's Marches."

Led by Major-General Mark McQuillan, the contingent deploying on Operation NIJMEGEN 2009 represents the entire Canadian Forces, comprising Regular and Reserve Force members of all ranks and occupations from across the country.

"Nijmegen is a test of physical fitness and stamina; however, it also helps build morale, camaraderie, and develops core military values, such as leadership and teamwork," said Major-General McQuillan. "Canada will be well represented by members of the CF contingent, who have been training for months to successfully complete the four days of marching."

This year's teams come from:

- Land Force Atlantic Area (two teams from Gagetown and Moncton, N.B.)

- Land Force Quebec Area (one team from Valcartier, Que.)

- Land Force Central Area (two teams from Petawawa, Ont.)

- Land Force Western Area (one team from Edmonton, Alta.)

- 8 Wing Trenton, Ont.

- 12 Wing Shearwater, N.S.

- 17 Wing Winnipeg, Man.

- 14 Wing Greenwood, N.S.

- 19 Wing Comox, B.C.

- Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, Ont.

- National Capital Region

- Canadian Forces Health Services Group (two teams)

- Assistant Deputy Minister (Information Management), Ottawa, Ont.

- 294 Air Cadet Squadron, Chatham, Ont.

Notes for news and assignment editors:

Media agencies can request interviews with Canadian Forces personnel in Nijmegen by contacting the Media Liaison Office at 1-866-377-0811 or 613-996-2353.

B-roll and imagery of the Nijmegen Marches will be posted on the Combat Camera website at

Imagery and stories of the Nijmegen Marches will be posted on the CEFCOM Website at

For further information, visit the official website of the International Four Days Marches Nijmegen at

Contact Information

  • Information: 1-866-377-0811/613-996-2353
    After hours: 613-792-2973