Veterans Affairs Canada

Veterans Affairs Canada

July 15, 2008 14:33 ET

Government of Canada Delegation Returns From South Korea

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 15, 2008) - The Government of Canada delegation arrived home in Canada today after an eight-day journey of remembrance in South Korea marking the 55th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice. The delegation was led by the Honourable Greg Thompson, Minister of Veterans Affairs, and included Veterans, representatives from Veterans' organizations, caregivers, parliamentarians and youth. All those who participated were deeply moved by their experience in South Korea.

"The trip was both emotional and inspiring for all those who participated. For many of the Veterans it was their first time returning to their former battlegrounds," said Minister Thompson. "It provided them with a sense of closure and fulfilment. Now they know first-hand that their service had a lasting effect, and that their sacrifices were not made in vain. They saw it in the freedoms that South Koreans enjoy today, and they felt it in the gratitude that was openly expressed by the South Korean people."

While in South Korea, the delegation participated in ceremonies of remembrance at the Republic of Korea National Cemetery in Seoul, the Korean War Memorial to the Armed Forces of the British Commonwealth in Gapyeong, and the Canadian Korean War Memorial Garden in Naechon.

The delegation also visited the United Nations Memorial Cemetery in Busan where 378 Canadian war dead are buried. A ceremony of remembrance was held in honour of the Canadian men and women who never returned. A traditional sunrise ceremony was also held at the cemetery by Aboriginal members of the delegation.

"There were 516 Canadians who paid the ultimate sacrifice in the pursuit of peace, freedom and justice for the people of South Korea," said Minister Thompson. "In Busan, we returned to the graves of our Canadian war dead. We honoured their service and vowed that neither time nor distance shall lessen our remembrance."

More information on the Korean War and commemorative events can be found on 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
    or
    Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs
    Richard Roik
    Director of Communications
    613-996-4649