OTTAWA, ON, July 20, 2023 /CNW/ – More than 26,000 Canadians served in the Korean War, bravely fighting for peace. Long seen as a “forgotten war,” it is an important chapter in Canada’s proud military history.
Later this month, a group of Canadian Korean War Veterans will participate in the Revisit Korea Program at the invitation of the Republic of Korea’s Ministry of Patriots and Veterans Affairs. While in Korea, they will attend ceremonies and events to recognize those who served in uniform during the Korean War and mark the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement (July 27).
Prior to their departure, the Veterans will head to Burnaby, British Columbia, where they will participate in a commemorative ceremony and events with the Korean Consulate in Vancouver.
In Korea, the Veterans will be accompanied by a Government of Canada delegation, led by the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence. The delegation will also include other Members of Parliament, a Veteran representing the Assembly of First Nations, and a historian from the Canadian War Museum.
While in Korea, the delegation will participate in commemorative ceremonies in Gapyeong and the United Nations Memorial Cemetery, as well as the Republic of Korea’s signature ceremony for the 70th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice Agreement.
“It is a true privilege for me to travel with these brave Canadians as they return to the Republic of Korea. Decades ago, they selflessly served our country and defended peace on the Korean peninsula. We remain committed to remembering everything they did for us, our country and the Korean people.”
The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence
“Thousands of Canadians served in the Korean War. They travelled across the Pacific to fight for peace and stability in a country unknown to many of them. I’m honoured to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice with some of these Veterans this weekend in British Columbia, before accompanying them as they return to where they once served.”
Darrell Samson, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence
- Eight Canadian warships served in the Korean War. These destroyers helped blockade the Korean coast, conducted counter-mining operations, guarded against enemy amphibious landings, protected the United Nations fleet, attacked onshore targets and provided humanitarian aid to isolated fishing communities.
- The Royal Canadian Air Force No. 426 Transport Squadron ferried troops and supplies between North America and East Asia. By the end of these duties in 1954, they had completed 600 round trips across the Pacific, carrying more than 13,000 passengers and three million kilograms of freight.
- Canada was the third largest contributor to the multi-national force in Korea. Although the Korean Armistice Agreement was signed on 27 July 1953, an additional 7,000 Canadians served between the cease-fire and the end of 1955, with some Canadian troops remaining until 1957. The names of 516 Canadian war dead are inscribed in the Korea Book of Remembrance on Parliament Hill in Ottawa.
- The anniversary of the signing of the Korean Armistice Agreement, July 27, is also known in Canada as Korean War Veterans Day since the passing of the Korean War Veterans Day Act in 2013.
- In 2023, Canada and Korea celebrates 60 years of diplomatic relations. Canada’s involvement during the Korean War (1950-1953) and sustained positive political and economic cooperation contribute to the close relationship between the two countries.
- To the present, Canada contributes members to United Nations Command (UNC) Headquarters based in Pyeongtaek, Korea. In 2018, Canada’s current Chief of the Defence Staff, General Wayne Eyre, served as the first non-American Deputy Commander of UNC.
Join the conversation on social media by using the hashtags #CanadaRemembers and #Korea70, or visit veterans.gc.ca.
Revisit Korea Program (note: English and Korean only)
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada