Defence Minister Jason Kenney unveiled a commemorative plaque on May 25 at the Valour Building in Ottawa honouring 20 recipients of the Star of Military Valour (SMV).
Formerly known as La Promenade Building at 151 Sparks Street in Ottawa, the building was renamed the Valour Building as part of the National Day of Honour on May 9, 2014, to honour all members of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) who served in Afghanistan.
“This plaque, and the name of this building in the Parliamentary Precinct, serve as a reminder of the self-sacrifice and devotion to duty embodied by our Canadian Armed Forces in Afghanistan. We honour these remarkable individuals who have been presented with the Star of Military Valour for their service to their country,” said Kenney.
Each of the recipients received their SMV for their distinguished and valiant service in the presence of the enemy during Canada’s 12-year mission in Afghanistan.
General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff spoke at the unveiling.
“I am pleased to recognize the 20 individuals who served the Canadian Armed Forces with such distinction and who demonstrated valour in the presence of the enemy. Let us remember this plaque serves as a tribute to the dedication and professionalism of all members of the Canadian Armed Forces who served in Afghanistan, and who remain ready to contribute to international peace and stability operations today.”
The SMV is one of three Military Valour Decorations, the Canadian Victoria Cross, the Star of Military Valour and the Medal of Military Valour that were created by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada, on January 1, 1993. The decorations may be awarded posthumously.
“I have no doubt that this will serve as inspiration for all who work on Parliament Hill exercising Canada’s cherished democratic freedoms,” said Andrew Scheer, speaker, House of Commons.
The plaque will also serve as a reminder that 40,000 CAF members served in Afghanistan between October 2001 and March 2014, making it the largest deployment of CAF personnel since the Second World War.
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