Veteran “humbled” by gift of Quilt

Quilts of Valour Legion
Front ( Left to Right ) Veterans - Laurie MacKenzie, Harold Soderlund, Tammy Guay, Alan Fell, Ed Rowe, Harold Quick. Back ( Left to Right ) Quilters Cindy Connell and Sandra Johnson.

Legionnaires gathered yesterday to celebrate service to both the branch and our country.

During part of the afternoon that had around 50 members of Royal Canadian Legion Branch 25 in attendance, quilts were presented to six veterans.

The “Quilts of Valour” were made by a local quilting guild Stitches From the Heart. Cindy Connell said it was an honour to do this for the veterans.

“We are here to present six quilts that our guild has assembled for five of our local veterans on behalf of Quilts of Valour,” said Connell. “Quilts of Valour is a token that is given to veterans as an appreciation of thanks for their service to Canada and the service to us.”

Quilts of Valour started in 2006 as an act of gratitude.

Volunteers who made these quilts work to ensure past and present members of the armed forces each get a quilt.

They are meant as a way to recognize their commitment and service to our country.

Helen Stewart is the President of the Legion branch which has been located on Great Northern Road for over half a century.

She noted this is all part of the legion’s overall goals of helping remember.

“Our mandate is to first off serve our veterans,” said Stewart. “The Sault quilt guild is giving away six-lap quilts to six very deserving veterans. So it’s just an honour our members, to honour our veterans, to have a nice social afternoon in these trying times.”

Tammy Guay served 25 years as a Master Corporal in the Air Force.

She was the first woman to be qualified as a loadmaster in the CC-130 Hercules and travelled the world from the Persian Gulf to Bosnia and here at home.

Getting a quilt is an honour she will never forget.

“It’s quite humbling whenever a veteran and you can ask any veteran is thanked for their service or presented with a quilt,” said Guay. “You really don’t know what to say because not to make light of our job, but it was a job and we really don’t ever know what to say other than thank-you and I’m very humbled.”

These six quilts add to the 15,000 quilts that have been handed out to veterans across Canada.

The Legion also handed out various service awards and recognitions during the ceremony.

The women’s auxiliary put on a lunch when it was all over.

The community is reminded although it will look a bit different there will be a poppy campaign this year as well as a Remembrance Day service.