The 2018 Guide Team

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BEATRICE

Montréal, Québec

DSC03696 (Medium)It is hard to grasp that most soldiers who landed in Normandy on D-day were my age. They sacrificed their lives in the name of justice and freedom, a debt we can never repay. Offering them our time, a time to remind ourselves of their immeasurable courage, of what they left behind for a better future is, I think, the least we can do. I came here to learn about the stories of these men, perhaps in the search of my own, in the hope of understanding my place in front of such a monumental turn in history. Standing on a former battlefield, one cannot help but realize the chance one has of simply being able to breathe in the salty air of a now quiet Juno Beach. It is a privilege to participate in the imperative task that is keeping memory alive and I intend to do justice to my country on these sacred grounds.”

 

GABRIEL

Montréal, Québec

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“Working at the Juno Beach Centre represents a unique opportunity for me to see how the Second World War influenced the societies subjected to it. Although Canada itself was not destroyed by bombs or foreign occupation, it is the very social fabric of our society that was affected. The war effort mobilized factories (my own grandmother worked in one of them!) and soldiers defending key spots in Canada, for fear of attack. During this time one million  canadians  wore the uniform. Similarly to France, but to a lesser degree, Canada felt the effects of war. Still today, many travel across the Atlantic to France but this time not for combat, rather to remember those who came before them. I am honoured to be one of them.”

 

THALIA

Vancouver, British Columbia/ Grandes-Piles, Mauricie, Québec

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“I am a 23 year-old Franco-Canadian who immigrated to Canada six years ago. Working for the Juno Beach Centre allows me to study the Second World War from a new perspective and to learn more about and feel closer to my new country. Canada’s role during the world wars was marking for the local French population, and I am looking forward to sharing it with you. It is difficult to imagine the horrors of war on the beautiful Normandy beaches, and yet everything here can remind us of what happened. From the tired bunkers that seem to emerge from the dunes, to the all too numerous cemeteries hidden amongst the trees and the houses of the Normand countryside, final resting places for soldiers that were far too young and far away from home. It is also the Canadian flag, noticeable in the streets, on memorials honoring their sacrifice, and on the beach, that remind us that these fallen men, and those who survived, will not and never will be, forgotten.”