Columns: Honouring our legion

This Remembrance Day, we have so much be grateful for including the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 139 here in Williams Lake.

This Remembrance Day, we have so much be grateful for including the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 139 here in Williams Lake.

The Royal Canadian Legion is an active organization throughout B.C., serving veterans of both the military and the police, as well as providing social services such as affordable seniors housing and assisted living.

This year, the Legion Branch 139 celebrates its 81st anniversary. It offers a place for veterans and their friends to gather and supports veterans and legion programs.

The Legion Branch 139 supports other community organizations and causes, too, such as the Salvation Army, dry grad programs, RCMP Youth Academy and the Heart and Stroke Foundation. Their contributions help make our communities safer and healthier places for families.

This Remembrance Day, as we honour those who defended and continue to defend our country, I urge you to take a moment to thank our veterans for their service the next time you see them out in the community.

There’s lots of ways to support Legion Branch 139 throughout the year. You can stop by for steak dinner or a dance. You can rent hall space for an event from the legion, as available. During the spring and summer months, Felker Lake picnic site is available to community organizations by donation.

A great example of the work of today’s veterans is The Communities For Veterans – Ride Across Canada campaign initiated by regional veteran Paul Nichols and his wife, Terry. For the past eight months these two, their daughter Kirsten and their team have been leading a band of veterans across the country to raise awareness about the physical and mental health challenges veterans can face. To date, Paul has rode 18-year-old Zoe more than 6,000 kilometers and has reached in St. John’s, Nfld. The Quesnel Seniors’ Centre is hosting a homecoming for Paul and his wife Terry Nichols on Dec. 10. Tickets are $25 each at Circle S Western Wear and the Kersley Store. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and dinner starts at 6 p.m.  I hope to see you there!

Coralee Oakes is the MLA for Cariboo North and is the Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction and the Minister Responsible for the Liquor Distribution Branch.