Tributes paid to Jasper's fallen soldiers

·2 min read

Nov. 6 marked the tenth year for the No Stone Left Alone ceremony at the cemetery in Jasper.

No Stone Left Alone aims to mark the headstones of every war veteran buried in Jasper Cemetery with a poppy for Remembrance Day. It is held to provide students and youth with an experience to create knowledge, understanding and appreciation of those who serve, and of the sacrifice of Canada's fallen.

This year, students and staff members from École Desrochers took turns laying poppies - 115 in all - on veterans' graves following a ceremony.

After O Canada, Jasper Royal Canadian Legion sergeant-at-arms, D.J. (Klem) Klymchuk, read a message from No Stone Left Alone Foundation founder and president, Maureen Bianchini Purvis.

She said, "I want you to know that with this small act of respect and honour, you truly are making a difference. You are setting an example for our youth, that no matter what happens in our daily lives, we must, and we will, remember them."

Mayor Richard Ireland said at the ceremony it is important for the veterans to be remembered, and for Jasper to be part of honouring them.

Rev. David Prowse gave a short address and read the Prayer of Remembrance. Students read the Commitment to Remember, then the Act of Remembrance was read by Prowse in English and Greg Key, Jasper Legion vice president, in French.

After The Last Post, Keith Henderson, service officer, laid a No Stone Left Alone wreath at the grave of veteran James Robinson, who died in 1941.

Robinson’s family immigrated to Canada from Ireland in April 1907, and he joined the Royal Flying Corps, lying about his age to qualify.

After the war, he became a lawyer and took over the Stanley A. Puffer law firm in Jasper. He and his wife, Mildred, had two children, Karen and James. Robinson volunteered as a flying instructor when the Second World War broke out but was killed during a routine training flight in a school yard north of Calgary on Nov 10, 1941. An Air Force funeral service was held in Edmonton with full military honours and Robinson's remains were taken home to Jasper by his brother, Bert, for burial in the Jasper Cemetery. His sacrifice was honoured with the laid wreath.

Joanne McQuarrie, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Jasper Fitzhugh