Orillia, Ontario was one of the towns that chose a practical tribute for WW1. Concerned with the number of soldiers returning from the war with severe health problems, the publisher of the local newspaper suggested building a hospital. Doctors in town agreed to provide free medical care to war veterans. About one-third of the $100,000 cost was borne by the town and surrounding township, with the rest raised by the citizens. The Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital opened in 1922 (and the original hospital became a maternity wing). It still serves the community today.
The local branch of the Royal Canadian Legion marked Canada’s centennial in 1967 by erecting a cenotaph in front of the hospital, at 170 Colborne St W at Dunlop St.
1914-1918 – By the grace of almighty God may all who pass this way hold sacred in their hearts the memories of those who fought and died that all might live in freedom – 1939-1945
Canada and Orillia, Centennial Year 1967, Erected by Royal Canadian Legion Branch 34
Inside the hospital is a plaque listing those from Orillia who died in WW1. They are also memorialized at the local Legion on Lakeview Ave at Mississauga St E.
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