By: Sgt Al Kowalenko, OMC (Retd), 48th Veterans Services Coordinator
Greetings to our 48th Highlanders veterans of all eras, Active Battalion members and our Regimental Family members.
Summer will be officially with us in the next few weeks and we would like to update you on two important veterans’ parades that will take place in July and August.
This will be the first time our 48th veterans will be able to participate in these parades in two years since the 2020 and 2021 events were cancelled by the pandemic.
Pachino Day Parade, Sunday July 10, 2022 @ 10:30 am, Belleville Armouries
The Pachino Day Parade is an annual event held to recognize the WWII Allied forces landing in Sicily on July 10, 1943, as part of “Operation Husky” and the start of the Italian Campaign. The fighting lasted for two years throughout Italy culminating in an Allied victory in May, 1945.
This date is significant for the 48th Highlanders because our Regiment was deeply involved in the Campaign and won the majority of its 27 WWII battle honors in several major battles in Italy, all the while advancing north up the Italian boot towards northwest Europe and the Liberation of Holland.
The overall Italian Campaign was costly for the 90,000 Canadians who participated. There were a total of almost 6,000 soldiers killed and more than 20,000 wounded. The 48th Highlanders sustained losses of 398 killed and 1,037 wounded.
The key battle honors won in Italy by the 48th Highlanders and which are emblazoned on the Regiment’s colors include: Landing in Sicily, Assoro, Campobasso, Ortona, Liri Valley, Hitler Line, Gothic Line, Rimini Line, and the Lamone Crossing.
Many of our older 48th Regimental Family members will remember the colorful stories told to us by our WWII veterans such as Sgt Herb Pike, and Cpl Gord Outhwaite and many others who participated in the Italian Campaign. These war commentaries are shown in the special documentary DVD “That Dileas Spirit” which was produced for the Regiment’s 120th Anniversary in 2011 and is available at our 48th Museum.
Hosting the Pachino Day Parade will be the Hastings and Prince Edward Regiment, along with participation by the Royal Canadian Regiment and the 48th Highlanders. All three Regiments landed together in Sicily in July, 1943, and have been recognizing Pachino Day for many years.
Our veterans’ contingent will be supported by our 48th Highlanders Association Drill Team (formerly the OCA Drill Team) who will carry the Regimental colors.
For those 48th veterans who would like to march in the Pachino Day Parade, here are the details:
DATE: Sunday, July 10, 2022 TIME: 1015 hrs (form up on parade square)
LOCATION: Belleville Armouries, 187 Pinnacle Street, Belleville, Ontario
DIRECTIONS: Highway 401 East to North Front St exit Belleville, then south to Pinnacle St.
DRESS CODE for 48th Veterans Marching in the Parade: 48th badged glengarry, white short-sleeve dress shirt, grey slacks, black dress shoes. Medal ribbons (if you have them) to be worn above the left shirt pocket.
PARADE: Veteran members of the 48th, Hasty Ps and RCR will form up on the inside Armouries parade square and march to the outside Armouries cenotaph for a memorial service from 1045-1145 hrs. (If inclement weather, the service will be held inside.)
LUNCHEON: After the parade, participants and guests are invited to a traditional spaghetti lunch served on the Belleville Armouries parade square from 1200-1400 hrs. (Cost per person is usually about $10 and tickets can be purchased on site.)
GUESTS: All members of the 48th Regimental Family are welcome to attend the Pachino Day Parade and memorial service.
TRANSPORTATION: Participants are responsible to provide their own transportation to Belleville. If you can assist with car-pooling that would be appreciated.
Warriors Day Parade, Saturday, August 20, 2022 @ 1030 am, CNE, Toronto
This year, the Warriors’ Day Parade will celebrate its 100th Anniversary which was previously cancelled during the past two years due to the pandemic. The Parade began at Toronto’s CNE in 1921 after WWI and is the largest parade of its type in Canada with several thousands of participants and spectators.
In 2019, the 48th Highlanders Color Party performed very well and placed third in the Parade competition from among the large number of Regimental Color Parties who participated. We are looking for similar results this year and a good turnout of veterans for 2022.
Our parade contingent will again be supported by our 48th Highlanders Association Drill Team, a guard commander (TBA), and the 48th Pipes and Drums (TBA).
For those 48th veterans who would like to march in the Warriors Day Parade, here are the details:
DATE: Saturday, August 20, 2022 TIME: 1030-1200 hrs
LOCATION: Canadian National Exhibition (CNE), Toronto, across from Fort York Armoury, 660 Fleet Street (form up in parking lot by Princes Gates, CNE, by 1015 hrs)
DRESS CODE for 48th Veterans Marching in the Parade: 48th badged glengarry, white short-sleeved dress shirt, grey slacks, black dress shoes. Medal ribbons (if you have them) to be worn above the left shirt pocket.
GUESTS: All members of the 48th Regimental Family are welcome to attend the parade. Admission to the CNE on August 20th is free to all Canadian Forces (Regular and Reserves) current and past members. You must show your CF identification (Active or Veteran) card to gain free admission to the CNE.
PARKING: There is also free parking for veterans at the CNE underground lot by the Princes Gates.
VIEWING STAND: Located just inside the Princess Gates, there is a large, multi-tier viewing stand for those who would like to see the Parade at a better vantage point.
POST PARADE: Various messes will be open at Fort York Armoury for parade participants and guests. Drinks, sandwiches and light snacks will be available for purchase.
More information on the Warriors’ Day Parade may be obtained on their official website at http://www.thewarriorsdayparade.ca/
Veterans Affairs Canada (VAC) Updates
The VAC website features a new article on their “Rehabilitation Services and Vocational Assistance Program (RSVP)”. The article is located at the bottom of the VAC home page.
The article notes that starting in November 2022, there will be a new national contractor that will set up a “Partners in Canadian Veterans Rehabilitation (PVRS)” program. They will then coordinate “all medical, psycho-social, and vocational assistance services” for Canadian CF veterans.
For more information visit the VAC website at www.veterans.gc.ca, or call 1-866-522-2122.
Happy Birthday Wishes To Our 48th WWII Era Veterans:
Norm Gogo will be celebrating his 101st birthday on June 18th.
He continues to live independently at his home in Penetang, Ontario.
George MacLean celebrated his 102nd birthday on February 4th.
He lives at the Martindale Gardens retirement home in Milton, Ontario.
Ken Milsom will celebrate his 103rd birthday on December 19th.
He lives at the Central King Seniors Residence in Weston, Ontario.
Tom White celebrated his 96th birthday on March 6th. He resides at Sunnybrook Hospital, L-Wing, Room L-GS 21.
Our best wishes go to our remaining 48th WWII era veterans. We will remember their war service and sacrifice on behalf of Canada and their communities. Dileas Gu Brath
Information Contact and Enquiries:
Sgt Al Kowalenko, OMC (Retd), Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Cell: 416-219-4967.
Please call or email if you have questions about VAC applications, support services or 48th veterans’ events for 2022.