The new national naval monument in Ottawa will remind Canadians of “the price of service” that cost a Canadian sailor, Petty Officer 2nd Class Craig Blake, his life earlier this week, said chief of the maritime staff.

Once the monument is complete next year, “many will pause to consider what this monument symbolizes,” said Vice-Admiral Dean McFadden. “And those thoughts will bring to mind ... the mostly young men and women who serve them.”

To mark Canada’s naval centennial, about 150 members of the Canadian navy attended the groundbreaking of the national naval monument at Richmond Landing yesterday.

The monument “will be an enduring legacy celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Canadian navy,” said master of ceremonies Mark Kristmanson.

“The site will pay tribute to the men and women who have served and continue to serve the Canadian navy,” said National Capital Commission CEO Marie Lemay. “While Canada’s capital region is far from our country’s oceans, it is fitting that our naval history be told here, where millions of Canadians and visitors come each year.”

The monument, designed by Vancouver’s Al McWilliams, Joost Bakker and Bruce Haden, will feature “gold spheres that speak of the sun, the moon, the stars and the global reach of the Canadian navy,” said Lemay. The monument also uses the navy colours and is designed to simulate the feeling of being aboard a ship.

While the navy stands ready to respond to aggression, it also acts as a force of good around the world, as was recently the case in Haiti, said McFadden.

“This story of engagement and of growth, of competence and confidence in our ability to make a difference in the world is one in which all Canadians can take great pride,” he said.

The monument will be completed next spring.

Latest From ...