Banners in downtown Stratford honour city's war veterans
STRATFORD -- Photos on banners in downtown Stratford honour veterans in the city.
The initiative is in its third year and was organized by the Stratford Perth Museum. This year, it was funded by families of the veterans.
There are 27 banners in total, raised high above the sidewalks of downtown Stratford.
"It was amazing," said Gary Dale, whose family members are on the flags.
The banners proudly display the rank, age, and war served by the veterans.
The Dale family has four members on display.
"It's very humbling because my grandfather was wounded twice in World War One," said Ross Dale. "He came home and he had lost an eye, he had been gassed, he has two wounds. They told him he probably wouldn't see 40 years old; he lived to be in his 80s."
While some are no longer here, they're far from forgotten. The banners also pay tribute to the people who never came home.
"My uncle never returned, he was missing in action," Larry Dale said.
The project was designed to reflect ahead of Remembrance Day.
"(You) look at those images and think about those people and where they were in the First World War or the Second World War," said John Kastner, general manager of the museum. "Just once a year, take a few minutes to reflect and think about those sacrifices that were so impactful.:
Each tribute is placed on a light post in downtown Stratford from the end of October until Nov. 11.
"There are certain things we need to do to remember the role of veterans, throughout the past and currently," Kastner said. "It's a way to keep that memory in existence."
There are more veterans added every year as the project continues to expand.
"If we didn't do something like this, everybody who was in the war would be forgotten and it would be forgotten," Larry said.
Next year, there will be more than 30 tributes.
"Every one of those people, there is a story that goes with it," Kastner said.