A historical date in Canadian history was recognized in the Saskatchewan Legislature Thursday.
Sunday will mark the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. More than 15,000 Canadian infantry overran the Germans all along the front that day.
Bravery and discipline allowed the infantry to continue moving forward under heavy fire.
There were countless acts of sacrifice, as Canadians charged machine-gun nests or forced the surrender of Germans in protective dugouts.
Greg Lawrence MLA for Moose Jaw Wakamow says he was honoured to rise in the Legislature to commemorate the sacrifice Canadian and Saskatchewan veterans made in capturing Vimy Ridge.
He says the battle was a turning point for allied forces. “April 9th, 1917, the Canadian Corp braved sleet, snow and machine gun fire on the steep slope in Vimy, France,” said Lawrence. “This was a critical position in the heavily-armed German defense who were hunkered down in barbed wire trenches. Thanks to their valour, on April 12th our troops had taken full control of the ridge.”
Nearly 4,000 Canadians were killed in the battle. Over 7,000 were wounded.
“Though is has been a full century since it occurred, said Buckley Belanger, the NDP NLA for Athabasca. “The legacy of those courageous Canadians in the battle of Vimy Ridge lives on.”
The capture of Vimy allowed all four Canadian divisions to attack together: men from all regions of Canada were present at the battle.
Brigadier-General A.E. Ross declared after the war, “in those few minutes I witnessed the birth of a nation.”
On Sunday, to mark to 100th anniversary, ceremonies will take place at the Cenotaph in Regina as well as the Legion and at the Saskatchewan Legislature.