Newspaper Article
Newspaper Article
Afghan Monument

In 2008, I worked for a short period of time for Kanata Honda. On Flag Day, Feb. 15 th. We created a Signature Flag in Support of the Troops. When the flag was completed I decided to bring it to work in order to let my coworkers sign the flag. The first young fellow to come along asked if he could sign my flag. His name was Jason Good. He told me that his uncle was the last soldier to die in Afghanistan, which shocked me and I didn't know what to say. There was room at the top of the flag so I asked him to sign there. He wrote, In Memory of Trooper Brian Good and signed, Jason Good.

He had commented, that he liked my hat. It was a Legion hat with Support The Troops on it. The next day I went to Legion Headquarters in Kanata and bought him a hat. I gave him the hat and one of my white flags with the outline of the maple leaf and the two bars drawn in with red marker. I told him that he could get all of his co-workers, friends, and relatives to sign and give the flag to Trooper Brian Good's wife.

On Mon. June 2nd., 2008, our Member of Parliament, Scott Reid invited me to Parliament Hill to present the same, Signature Flag to the Honourable Peter McKay, Minister of National Defence in Support of Our Troops. Peter took the flag over to Kandahar several weeks later and presented it to the Troops. In Dec. 2011 Bill Bagg heard that they were moving the monument to Ottawa and would eventually be finding a new home somewhere in the Ottawa area. He suggested that it would tie in well with the Hall of Valour and they were looking for a new home. I thought that it would be a great tie-in and decided to run with the idea. I approached Mayor Wendy Le Blanc and she liked the idea. I asked if she would send a letter to Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defense and she readily agreed, saying, "If you don't write the letter, there's not a chance of it happening. They're not going to come to you." She sent the letter on Jan. 4th., 2012. Then, on Feb. 13th., she received a letter back from Peter McKay thanking her for the offer and saying that we would be considered in the process. On Mon. Dec. 3rd. 2012 the story was on the front page of the Ottawa Citizen, " Carleton Place lobbies for the Afghan Memorial."

On March 23rd., 2012, five soldiers from across Canada came to the Almonte Legion to present me back one of my flags that was created in Mississippi Mills on Flag Day several years earlier in Levi Home Hardware. I immediately presented the flag to the Almonte Legion because the flag was created in Mississippi Mills. Mayor John Levi was a part of the presentation. I was also presented with a beautiful wine and gold Afghan. I was talking to the soldier that presented the flag to me and told him
that we had applied for the Afghan Monument. He told me that he disassembled it and packed it up to be sent to Ottawa. What are the chances?

When the Monument had come back to Ottawa I saw on the News an interview with Trooper Brian Good's wife looking at the crate that held the pieces of the Monument and she was holding the black granite plaque with her husband's picture and name. What are the chances?

Gary Strike