As I grew up over the years, every time I met my Great Uncle John Gendron, who was a war Veteran, he always ended our conversation with ‘We live in the best country in the world’. This brave soldier had a very unique story to tell, and he was always eager to tell it. He was a bomber in WWII and flew many flights over Germany in the Halifax 11. His crew was the only Canadian crew known to have been shot down, where all crew members survived the crash. They were all taken prisoner of war, and lived to be released at the end of the war. So when my Great uncle said ‘We live in the best country in the world’ I think his experiences during the war gave him the right to make that disclaimer, and I agree with him completely. He and all the other soldiers from WWI and WWII risked their lives so that we could continue to live in the best country in the world.
Our beautiful nation was definitely worth fighting for. From the colourful maritime fishing villages through the great Canadian shield, the golden plaines of the prairies, to the breath taking mountains of the Rocky’s, Canada is rich in natural resources. During the 1920’s and 30’s, Emily Carr and the famous Group of Seven painters recorded the beauty of our nation with their paint brushes and bold colours.
Because of those brave soldiers our Country was allowed to continue to develop all the while protecting the rights and freedoms of its’ people. With the development of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms our forefathers recognize the importance of protecting our freedom of speech, religion, peaceful assembly and association. Canada was a leader in the acceptance of gay and lesbian marriages by making it legal 9 years ago while other countries are still debating the subject. As well, Canada is a leader in terms of human rights and equalities by not allowing discrimination based on age, sex, race, or disability. All these things make me extremely proud to be Canadian and very grateful for the wisdom of our forefathers.
Canada has made incredible contributions to the world. One of the most important contributions was standard time, which was invented by Sir Sanford Fleming. The second major invention is the invention of insulin by Frederick Banting. This invention has saved the lives of many diabetics, including my dad who has type 1 diabetes. Another huge invention was basketball created by Naismith in 1891 who lived only half an hour away from my house in Almonte.
When I think about why my Great Uncle finished every conversation with a statement ‘We live in the best country in the world’ I realize that he wanted to make sure that we appreciated this great Country. It was his gently reminder that many lives were lost so that we could enjoy this beautiful land and our freedoms. With this freedom and safety, our people are allowed to create, solve problems and contribute great accomplishments to the world. I am very proud to be Canadian and so grateful to live in this land, the true north, strong and free.
thanks for reading,
Miss Teenage Southeastern Ontario