Veterans Affairs Canada

Veterans Affairs Canada

May 01, 2009 12:40 ET

VAC: Canada Remembers the Battle of the Atlantic

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - May 1, 2009) - The Honourable Greg Thompson, Minister of Veterans Affairs, issued the following statement today regarding the 66th anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic.

"The Battle of the Atlantic was a battle unlike any other of the Second World War. For six long years, brave Canadians courageously fought to protect the crucial supply lines to Great Britain and the European Front. Without these supplies, the war effort would have collapsed.

Sixty-six years ago, in May 1943, the battle turned significantly in favour of the Allies after receiving more training, air cover, special intelligence and better equipment.

However, victory was not without sacrifice. More than 4,600 courageous service men and women from the Canadian Merchant Navy, the Royal Canadian Navy and the Royal Canadian Air Force died at sea during the Battle of the Atlantic.

Through six years of enemy attacks and severe conditions, the Canadians protected Allied convoys and our national coastline. Canada became the guardian of those in need, and today we continue this noble tradition. The Canadian Forces now serving in Afghanistan and elsewhere in the world are proudly upholding our tradition of defending freedom, democracy and the rule of law.

Today we honour those who served over the turbulent waters of the Atlantic Ocean. We remember, with everlasting gratitude, those who made the supreme sacrifice-those whose final resting places cannot be marked by graves. 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
    or
    Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs
    Richard Roik
    Director of Communications
    613-996-4649