Saving the stories of veterans

Author from Nova Scotia writes about his Burns Lake connection


In 2010, our son and his family were taking a trip from Surrey to the border of Alaska. On the way, they stopped briefly at the museum in Burns Lake. In the course of his conversation with the archivist, Lee Safonoff, our son mentioned to her that I was writing a book about military veterans.

My purpose in writing the book was an effort to save stories of the experiences of military veterans while there was still time, as I had with others in previous books. Lee and I came into telephone contact after our son and his family had returned home. The name Alan Blackwell, a former member of the Devil’s Brigade of World War II, came up in passing. Sensing a story, I found Alan’s telephone number online and phoned him. He gave me his story and I included it in my book, The Forces and the Faces.

Alan sent me a copy of his book, 70 Years Next to Paradise. I sent a copy of my book to Alan and one to the museum. Lee sent me a beautiful thank-you letter. I believe that she intended to use the book in the reading room at the museum. Since many people who gave me their stories are no longer living, I am glad to have made the effort to save the stories that I did for posterity.

Duane Duff

Lawrencetown, Nova Scotia

Just Posted

Man hit, killed by vehicle in Fraser Lake

A man was struck and killed by a motor vehicle in Fraser… Continue reading

Cullen gets $89,000 in post-MP severance

At 55, the former MP will also be eligible for an $82,000 per annum pension

Pipeline project prioritizes local workers, TC says

The Coastal GasLink (CGL) pipeline project might offer numerous jobs to locals… Continue reading

Possible pot shop in the works

Signage of Crossroads Cannabis has gone up on the building that KFC… Continue reading

Scaring away hunger

Members of Lakes District Secondary School (LDSS)’s Student Voice leadership group collected… Continue reading

VIDEO: Canadian allergists’ group wants Benadryl behind the counter due to side effects

Some doctors say the medication is over-used because of its easy availability

Vancouver Island soap company releases Lucky Lager beer soap

Beer-infused olive oil soap comes out just in time for holiday shopping

Jagmeet Singh says he’ll vote against throne speech if NDP requests not met

Singh is to meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday

Community uses loophole to paint 16 rainbow crosswalks after B.C. council says no

So far 11 rainbows are painted and five planned, all since council denied the first proposal in September

Former B.C. youth pastor guilty on one of five sexual assault allegations

Judge cites reasonable doubt in finding Cloverdale couple not guilty of majority of charges

238 and counting: Vancouver gelato shop sets Guinness World record for most flavours

Vince Misceo has come up with 588 different flavours over the decades

Workers’ camp at LNG facility in Kitimat takes shape

Extensive worker camp now being assembled

Killer who fled to Taiwan day after shooting B.C. man over $80 sentenced 13 years later

The sentence comes 13 years after Shaoxin Zhang, 19, was killed in a Burnaby parking lot

B.C. forest industry trade mission finding new markets in China

Diplomatic tensions eased, minister Doug Donaldson says

Most Read