-6.9 C
Saturday, November 16, 2019
Connecting Our Communities

A very visual – and visible – way to remember

Linwood banners featuring names and faces of war veterans join Elmira displays in effort spearheaded by the Legion

Many of the hydro poles in Wellesley have been transformed into a tribute for those who fought and died in the service of the country.

A series of double-sided banners featuring the names and photos of 16 local fallen soldiers of the First and Second world wars are now on display in the village of Linwood. The first-time initiative is particularly meaningful to residents of the township, as each veteran is well-known to the community and has relatives living in the area.

“This is a reminder for people,” said Wellesley Mayor Joe Nowak. “It’s going to be 75 years next year since the end of the war.

“We’ve had 75 years of relatively peaceful times … and I think people become complacent with that peace. This is a reminder that these folks fought hard to give us that peace.”

Many soldiers depicted have already left their mark on the community; veteran Earle C. Lavery was the inspiration behind the name Lavery Road, just east of Linwood. Ament Line, a route that passes through Linwood, honours Arthur “Archie” Ament, who lost a leg during combat in the Second World War. He later became the postmaster in Linwood upon his return.

Other commemorated soldiers throughout Linwood include Joseph Sherrer, who was injured in combat and later died in Italy. He has a brother, nieces and nephews living in Linwood. Charles J. Doherty joined World War I at age 20 as an army recruit in 1915, became a Private and saw action in Belgium, Holland and France.

Sam Friedmann was a soldier in World War I, and his three sons, Don, Jack, and Wally, served in World War II. His descendants are the Friedmann family, who reside in Linwood.

Linwood is not the only community involved with this initiative:  Elmira already has many local soldiers on display throughout the town and has been doing so every November for the past several years.

Mary Ellen Genereux of the Royal Canadian Legion’s Elmira branch 469 adds that community requests for veteran banners continue to roll in.

“Other people want to know when they can get in on this,” said Genereux, adding that no more could be displayed in Elmira Legion this year due to a regional retrofit of the light posts. “We have a growing list.”

The collaborative effort was spearheaded by Joe Doherty, a member of the Elmira Legion whose uncle served in the war. He was approached by Teresa Kuepfer, a member of the Linwood Wings Committee, with the possibility of war veteran banners for Linwood that she noticed displayed in Harriston.

Doherty discovered the names and contacted the soldier’s families using a roll call sheet that Genereux presents at the local cenotaph. He approached the council back in May to receive approval to move forward with the project.

Wellesley gave the go-ahead but needed permission to use the local hydro poles owned by Waterloo North Hydro to move forward.

“It was nice that the community came together to do this; this wasn’t a township initiative,” said Nowak.

Funds for the veterans’ banners came from the profits of wing nights hosted by the Linwood Wings Committee during the winter months.

“We’re starting our fourth season of wing night in November,” said committee member Blaine Hergott. “Our priority was a social event for the town that we’re able to fundraise money for our town. So this is our way of giving back. … It was a team effort, for sure.”

Once the banners arrived from a manufacturer, they were installed by Wellesley Township maintenance personnel last Friday. They will be on display until November 20, and be stored in the Elmira Legion during the winter months.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to The Observer's online community. Pseudonyms are not permitted. By submitting a comment, you accept that The Observer has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner The Observer chooses. Please note that The Observer does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our submission guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.


Spicy and substantial fit the bill just now

Way too much of the white stuff – some of it sticking on the ground – for this point in November. With the early darkness in the evenings, it’s certainly feeling a bit...

In Print. Online. In Pictures. In Depth.

Looking to do some research about the communities we serve? Browse through the years in our online archives.

An immersive experience helps kids acquire language skills

Two months into their stay in the country, a group of students from France got to experience another cultural moment of sorts...

A very visual – and visible – way to remember

Many of the hydro poles in Wellesley have been transformed into a tribute for those who fought and died in the service...

An exchange of cultures proves an illuminating experience

The new exchange student in Woolwich Township has been enjoying the small-town life so far. Since mid-August, Maud...

Scaring up some Halloween fun in Elmira

Those in search of the Halloween spirit need look no further than the vibrant, spooky display at an Elmira heritage home, an experience...

Program encourages Girls to give it a Go

Whether you’re a girl in need of a new friend or just someone to hear you out, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Waterloo...

Lions mark 100 years with tree-planting blitz

For 100 years, Lions Club chapters have been helping support their local communities. To mark the centennial celebration, various clubs will join together to...

A retirement gift befitting a tireless volunteer

When Elmira’s Ted Brough opted to retire, he had no idea that the decision would create a legacy fund that would benefit the...

Going the distance in support of pollinators

Elmira’s Clay Williams – along with approximately 44 other runners – will shadow the migration path of the monarch butterflies on a journey that...
- Advertisement -