Great War 100 Reads

Commemorating the centenary of the First World War in books

Monday Monuments and Memorials – Calgary Soldiers’ Memorial, Calgary, AB

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The Calgary Soldiers’ Memorial stands in the park that runs between Memorial Drive and the Bow River, east of Poppy Plaza between 10 St NW and 14 St NW. It forms part of the Landscape of Memory park project along Memorial Drive.

Six marble slabs reminiscent of the Commonwealth War Grave Commission grave stones list over 3,000 soldiers from Canadian Army Reserve Regiments based in Calgary who died in service in WW1, WW2 or Afghanistan. The slabs are mounted through a platform with an outlook that points across the river toward the Mewata Armouries, home to most of the regiments. Wood and rusted steel form a bench running the length of the monument, into which is cut “we will remember them.” Dates incised on the steel skirt in front of the slabs mark battle honours for the regiments.

The cap badge of each unit tops the slab on which it is commemorated. In order of precedence:

  • The Kings Own Calgary Regiment
  • 746 Communications Squadron
  • 41st Combat Engineer Regiment
  • 15th Field Ambulance
  • The Calgary Highlanders
  • 10th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Forces
  • 50th Battalion of the Canadian Expeditionary Forces

The slab facing the river cites part of John McCrae’s poem, In Flanders Fields – “we lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow” – as a reminder that the soldiers once enjoyed Calgary sunsets over the Rocky Mountains.

The memorial was coordinated by the Calgary Highlanders to mark the centennial of the oldest regiments based in the city. It was designed by Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative and dedicated on April 9, 2011.

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Author: greatwar100reads

Canadian crusader for equality and justice. Connoisseur and creator of the written word. Commemorating the centenary of the First World War in books and monuments. Read more at greatwar100reads.wordpress.com.

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