Remembering Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and Corporal Nathan Cirillo

This year marks the seventh year since Canadian Armed Forces members Corporal (Cpl) Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer (WO) Vincent lost their lives.

Corporal (Cpl) Nathan Cirillo was gunned down while guarding the Canadian National War Memorial, and Warrant Officer (WO) Vincent’s life was taken just days before Cpl Cirillo after being struck in a hit and run targeted incident.

Acting Chief of the Defence Staff

Canadians remembered the Canadian Armed Forces personnel this week. Acting Chief of the Defence Staff tweeted, “Today we pause to honour the ultimate sacrifice made 7 years ago by WO Patrice Vincent (20 Oct 2014) and Cpl Nathan Cirillo (22 Oct 2014). We will remember them.”

Corporal Nathan Cirillo

Corporal Nathan Cirillo lost his life at the age of 24 on October 22, 2014. From Hamilton, Ontario, he was a Canadian Army reserve soldier serving with The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada (Princess Louise’s), Hamilton, Ontario. He died after he was shot by 32-year-old Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, the perpetrator of the 2014 shootings on Parliament Hill, which put downtown Ottawa in lockdown.

The 2014 Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu ramming attack was a terror car-ramming in Quebec on October 20, 2014. Two Canadian Forces members were hit by a lone wolf Martin Couture-Rouleau. Warrant officer Patrice Vincent died from injuries, while another soldier was injured but survived.

WO Patrice Vincent

Martin Rouleau took WO Vincent’s life, as he was deliberately struck down because he was wearing his uniform. RCAF Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was a member of the Joint Personnel Support Unit, Integrated Personnel Support Centre St-Jean. Vincent was a 28 year Veteran. He joined the forces as a Combat Engineer in 1985. He re-mustered and became a military Fire Fighter, where he was posted to various locations across Canada and served on numerous warships.

In 2014, one of Air Task Force Iraq locations was named Camp Vincent, in honour of WO Vincent. Likewise, the operations base of Canadian Special Operations Forces Command in Iraq is now called Patrol Base Cirillo, in honour of Cpl Cirillo.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

To mark the seventh anniversary of the attack, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued the following statement, “Seven years ago today, Canadians were left shocked and saddened by a tragic terrorist attack at the National War Memorial and Parliament Hill in Ottawa that claimed the life of Corporal Nathan Cirillo, a sentry at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and injured several others.

“On this sombre anniversary, I join Canadians as we remember Corporal Cirillo, along with Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent who was killed two days earlier in a separate attack in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec. We offer our deepest sympathies to their families and friends and to all those affected by these senseless acts of violence.

“Today, we also honour the first responders who courageously risked their lives to protect us on that dark day. We salute the bystanders who rushed to the aid of Corporal Cirillo – the bravery and fortitude they showed during this tragic event truly exemplifies how Canadians are always there to help one another, even in the face of terror.

“As Canadians, we will always stand up against violence and terrorism. We will not let acts of hate instill fear and divide us. Our response to these attacks reminds us of the values that define us – freedom, diversity, and inclusion.

“As we take a moment to pay tribute to these two members of our Canadian Armed Forces, I encourage everyone to give thanks to our brave service men and women – past and present – who continue to defend and protect our communities and our country.”

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Julia Lennips

Julia is a journalist who is an avid reader and an artist. She is living in North Bay, ON pursing her passion for reporting.

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