Legion members awarded
THREE MEMBERS of Branch 13 of The Royal Canadian Legion have been presented with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal.
Mary Ann Misfeldt, Doug Misfeldt and Brian Kirkaldy have together held a variety of executive posts with the branch, within the region and nationally over the years.
Mary Ann Misfeldt was not only the first woman to become president of Branch 13 and the first woman to lead the BC Yukon Command of the Royal Canadian Legion but the first woman to become national president of the Royal Canadian Legion.
“I figured that if I was going to be the first woman, I would go all the way,” said Misfeldt.
Misfeldt was Legion president between 2004 and 2006 and was the first – and so far only – person in that capacity to visit Canadian forces in Afghanistan.
“It was a morale-building trip,” recalls Misfeldt.
“At that time, there were a lot of questions about what our military was doing over there. There were people wondering what they were doing there and why they weren’t back at home.”
The visit was organized by the Canadian Forces and Misfeldt was accompanied by a number of high-ranking officials, including the mayor of Petawawa, Ontario, the home of a large Canadian base, and the deputy commissioner of the RCMP.
Misfeldt continues to be involved with national issues of the Royal Canadian Legion and is among a group of people working on a leadership development program.
“These Jubilee medals are about service to veterans,” she said.
Her Jubilee medal was presented at the Legion’s national level.
Doug Misfeldt is the current zone commander, a position he has held before along with being president of Branch 13.
Kirkaldy has also been a zone commander and a president of Branch 13.
“People like Brian and Doug just give so much of their time,” said BC Yukon Command executive director Inga Kruse.
“It’s their personal time and they do it for others,” she said of the activities they’ve undertaken.
In addition to being presidents and zone commanders, Kirkaldy and Misfeldt have been fixtures at the annual Remembrance Day parades.
Kirkaldy has been parade marshal and Misfeldt the Sergeant at Arms and both have been members of the branch’s colour party.
Kirkaldy and Misfeldt were among approximately 150 Legion members across the province to receive the Jubilee medals.
The Legion’s Dominion Command of the Royal Canadian Legion received an allocation of Jubilee medals and then distributed to regional commands for presentations to people who were then nominated, said Kruse.