UXBRIDGE: After a tremendously well received first year, there are plans to expand the Honour Our Veterans Banner Program in downtown Uxbridge this fall.
Building on a project first launched by the Royal Canadian Legion in St. George, New Brunswick last year, the project honoured 67 different members of the military with their photos affixed to banners on Brock and Toronto St. from Oct. 1 to Nov. 12.
Uxbridge Secondary School teacher Tish MacDonald and Uxbridge Legion Branch 170 President Sherrill Hodgson appeared before Council at their meeting on the evening of Monday, Jan. 25, to provide an update on the project, which will expand significantly this year.
“We heard lots and lots of great stories, and that’s why we’d like to continue the program with your support,” explained Ms. MacDonald, adding that organizers have had tremendous interest from other communities such as Brooklin, Sunderland, Aurora and as far away as Massachusetts. To help facilitate the project in other areas, a guidebook has been produced and sent out to all of the branches of the Royal Canadian Legion in Durham Region.
Locally, the program will look to honour more veterans this fall. As Ms. Hodgson noted, there are an additional 40 brackets on lightposts in Uxbridge’s downtown core that could hold banners, bringing the total number to 107.
“We’ve also included a question on this year’s application if they’d like to have them in the hamlets,” added Ms. Hodgson, noting that those changes would likely have to wait until 2017.
Ward 2 Councillor Pat Molloy enthusiastically offered to take an inventory of potential locations throughout the hamlets in Uxbridge Township.
As they did in 2015, councillors voted unanimously to support the township covering the cost of installation for the banners, pegged at approximately $1,600.
“I think that’s a very small price to pay to honour those who paid the supreme price as well as those who came back,” opined Mayor O’Connor.
Applications for the 2016 Honour Our Veterans Banner program will be available in April from the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 170 on Franklin St., as well as on-line at www.uxbridgelegion.ca.