Canadian Armed Forces commemorate the 70th Anniversary of the Sicilian campaign

News Release / July 24, 2013 / Project number: NR 13.239

TRENTON, ON – To commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Sicilian Campaign, 60 Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel departed 8 Wing Trenton today for Sicily, where they will retrace parts of the route marched by Canadian soldiers who landed on the beaches of Pachino in July, 1943.

“As members of the Canadian Armed Forces contingent march through the mountainous terrain of Sicily during its hottest months, they will experience some of the same challenges as those who completed this journey 70 years ago,” said The Honourable Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence.  “And as they overcome these challenges, they will remember the Canadian soldiers who fought and died in Sicily during the Second World War.”

Operation SICILY is the CAF participation in the privately-led commemorative effort Operation HUSKY 2013.  Eager to commemorate the 70th anniversary of Operation HUSKY, the operation that launched the Sicilian Campaign, a group of private citizens organized Operation HUSKY 2013, a symbolic march from Pachino to Agira, between July 10 and August 1.

“Marching side by side in Sicily, members of the Canadian Armed Forces will join with their fellow Canadians to commemorate the bravery, success, and sacrifice of those who fought in Sicily,” said Lieutenant-General Marquis Hainse, Commander of the Canadian Army.  “As they participate in remembrance ceremonies along the route, they will reflect on the impact the Second World War had on both Italy and Canada, and will honour the incredible bravery demonstrated by both countries’ citizens during this time of conflict.”

“We are recreating a piece of history with every step we take,” said Major-General Jim Ferron, Commander of 1st Canadian Division Headquarters.  “And as we honour our past, we also celebrate our relationship with our Italian hosts, a relationship that has grown stronger over the years.”

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Notes to editor / news director:

For ongoing updates on Operation SICILY, please follow the Canadian Army Facebook page at: http://www.facebook.com/CANArmy

Imagery of Operation SICILY will be posted on the following website: http://www.combatcamera.forces.gc.ca

For more information on the privately-led commemorative effort Operation HUSKY 2013, please visit the official website at http://www.operationhusky2013.ca.

Contact information:

Lesley Craig, Communications Advisor, at 613-618-9208 or via email at lesley.craig@forces.gc.ca

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