Commemorative banners to honour those who lost their lives in the First World War and the Second World War will be displayed along Island Highway East and the Alberni Highway in Parksville through November.
The annual program, approved by Parksville council in 2020, recognizes the veterans whose names are listed on the Parksville Cenotaph, according to a news release by the city. Ongoing research has allowed the city to add four new banners.
“Of the 60 veterans listed on the cenotaph, we have been able to find photos for 38,” the release read. “We appreciate the many residents who shared personal stories and valuable information about family members, not otherwise obtainable through archives or museums.”
Gathering information and stories to personalize the lives of these veterans has been rewarding and challenging for the city, the release said.
“Our sincere thanks to researcher, Valda Stefani, who pursued the stories through archives worldwide,” the release read.
Stefani established relationships with military museums and other researchers, and conducted interviews to ensure the City of Parksville learned about as many veterans as possible.
The city’s website tells the incredible and heartwarming stories of local veterans of the world wars.
Many of the local young men who enlisted, especially in the First World War, were recent arrivals from such places as the UK and Australia and were too young to have started families, adding to the challenge to find photographs and details.
The city’s search for missing details about Parksville veterans continues — if you can help, contact Deb Tardiff.
— NEWS Staff, submitted