Oak Bay man leads Afghanistan memorial project

Greater Victoria Afghanistan Memorial Project expects to see monument this month

A rendering of the monument to be placed in Victoria to honour those who served in Afghanistan. Courtesy GVAMP

A rendering of the monument to be placed in Victoria to honour those who served in Afghanistan. Courtesy GVAMP

A memorial commemorating those who died in Afghanistan arrived in the region this week, says the head of the Greater Victoria Afghanistan Memorial Project.

“I’ve been pleased at how well its come together,” said Oak Bay resident . E. L. (Larry) Gollner, retired Brigadier-General.

Gollner inspected 20,000-pound, six-foot monument and all apprearsi n order to unveil it in a ceremony this fall.

The group wrestled with the wording to ensure it recognizes all 40,000 who served with special mention for families, those who returned with physical and emotional wounds; and particularly names of those killed in the conflict “to honour their sacrifice,” he said.

If you qualify education as a weapon, he says, we made helped the Afghan population.

“We made a lot of process with the children,” he said. “When we left in 2014 there were over 8 million children in school, including 3 million girls.”

Fittingly, he added, the monument doesn’t feature a traditional solder and bayonet or other weapon. Instead the image is a silhouette of a soldier and child.

Originally planned for the pathway adjacent to Christ Church Cathedral, the memorial is now set to go on provincial land, adjacent to the Victoria courthouse. The goal is to unveil the monument in Victoria on Sept. 30.

Visit vicafghanistanmemorial.ca to learn more about the project.

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com