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November 8 marks National Indigenous Veterans Day, a day when we come together to honor and remember the extraordinary contributions of our Indigenous ancestors during the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War.
In the Northwest region, Indigenous heritage and history are deeply intertwined with the story of Canada. Our ancestors played vital roles during the War of 1812, defending our emerging nation from American attacks and safeguarding our people. Their courage and sacrifices laid the foundation for the Canada we cherish today.
Our local Indigenous veterans, such as Sergeant Tommy Prince of the 2nd Battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, are among the most decorated soldiers in the country’s history. Despite their heroism, many of them modestly believed they were merely fulfilling their duty.
National Aboriginal Veterans Day, initially established in Manitoba in 1994, has since evolved into National Indigenous Veterans Day, observed annually on November 8. It’s a day to pay tribute to the immense contributions and sacrifices made by our Indigenous ancestors in shaping Canada’s reputation in both wartime and peacekeeping missions.