A cross in memory of Tom Cave

On November 11, the Canadian and son of a veteran Peter Buckley was carrying out a special mission when he placed a commemorative cross for Gunner-Sergeant Tom Cave, at the Royal Canadian Artillery memorial in Bernières-sur-Mer.  The cross had been prepared by Julie Jeanette and Jane, Tom Cave’s daughters. The purple heather is attached to the little cross with a ribbon and a brass button from Tom’s uniform jacket.

Tom landed on Juno Beach at the same hour as Hugh Buckley, Peter’s father, Hugh, near of la Maison des Canadiens (Canada House). Tom survived the Italian campaign before joining the operations of D-Day and Liberation via Juno Beach, with the British Royal Horse Artillery attached to the Canadian 3rd Division. Both Tom and Hugh spoke of the ‘traffic jam’ on D-Day morning in Bernières. Tom departed Bernièress via the railway track, with his 25 Pounder guns in tow, while Hugh drove out of Bernières via the road where the memorial stands today, in a Stuart tank.

Tom received the Legion de Honneur a year before he passed away on December 2016, but he visited Juno Beach for the major anniversaries and took part in the ceremonies at the memorial where his cross has been placed.

Peter with Tom’s cross

Dispatches from Juno shares all the news, events, and stories from the Juno Beach Centre in France and Canada. Interested in contributing a story to the blog? Email the editor at jbca@junobeach.org.

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