Mom of soldier who died by suicide after Afghan tour named Silver Cross Mother


OTTAWA — A woman who lost her son to suicide months after he served with the Canadian military in Afghanistan has been named this year’s Silver Cross Mother.

The Royal Canadian Legion says Anita Cenerini of Winnipeg will represent the country with the title until the end of October 2019.

Cenerini’s son, Pte. Thomas Welch, was an infantryman and member of the 3rd Battalion Royal Canadian Regiment based in Petawawa, Ont., who killed himself less than three months after returning from Afghanistan.

His death on May 8, 2004, was deemed to be the first death by suicide of a Canadian soldier after coming home from operations in the war-torn country, and was later attributed to his military service.

The 22-year-old soldier joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 2001 and served as a gunner in Afghanistan in 2003.

Cenerini will place a wreath at the National War Memorial in Ottawa on Nov. 11 on behalf of Canadian mothers who have lost a son or daughter in the military.

The Canadian Press