JOHN Shaw flew in long distance aircraft from a base in the Maritimes, far out over the dangerous North Atlantic on the look out for both friendly ships and enemy submarines.
That he never left Canada in no way diminished the importance of the role he played for had Allied forces not kept the North Atlantic shipping lanes open, Britain would have literally starved and been unable to function as the land base for the invasion of Europe in 1944.
Otto Lindstrom did fight overseas, a member of the Canadian Army which took part in the long and bloody fight to liberate first Sicily and then Italy beginning in 1943. That campaign was called The Forgotten War, often overshadowed by the June 1944 storming of the beaches at Normandy.
But, as Mr. Lindstrom himself put it in a 2004 feature in The Terrace Standard written by Jennifer Lang, “if it hadn’t been for the army in Italy, D-Day would have failed.” That’s because Allied forces tied down enemy troops in Italy, preventing them from being used as reinforcements in France.
Mr. Shaw and Mr. Lindstrom, both in their 90s, passed away in November, thinning out even more the ranks of those surviving who fought in the Second World War. Their passing reinforces the need for all of us to remember the sacrifices that soldiers, aircrew and sailors made in all wars. Not just on Remembrance Day, but throughout the year.