Veterans remembered at rededication service

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NEW GLASGOW — Four veterans who are buried at Riverside Cemetery in New Glasgow were remembered last week during a re-dedication ceremony hosted by Branch 34 of the Royal Canadian Legion in New Glasgow.

Hugh Muir, Branch 34 president, presided over the ceremony that attracted nearly 20 people. The ceremony was scheduled to take place at the cemetery but was moved indoors due to inclement weather.

“I think it’s important as a Legion branch and as a community to acknowledge our veterans,” Muir said.

Muir introduced guest speaker Bill Graham, member of Branch 582 in Mississauga, Ont., who has a special attachment to those being rededicated and shared the significance of the event.

He described those being remembered: RN Marjorie Fraser, who died during the First World War on June 27, 1918, the same date as last week’s ceremony when the hospital ship Llandovery Castle was torpedoed. Her parents were Bessie Marshall and Captain William L. Graham and she and her cousin Harriet Graham enlisted as RNs in 1915.

Also being rededicated was Marjorie’s younger brother Alistair Fraser, who was wounded twice in the First World War.

James Gibson Laurier enlisted in 1917 and was one of five officers killed by an enemy artillery barrage on March 4, 1918.

“Bessie, his mother, received a message telling of his death on her birthday,” Graham said. “Her daughter, thinking it was a birthday greeting from the front, sent the message to the mother on her breakfast tray. They were all heartbroken.”

George Douglas MacDougall was a 21-year-old from New Glasgow and a pilot officer in the RCAF during the Second World War. He was on his 22nd bombing mission in a Lancaster Bomber to Hamburg, Germany when he died when the bomber was shot down over Manford, Holland.

From left: guest speaker Bill Graham, Branch 34 chaplain Adeline Luckie and Branch 34 president Hugh Muir were among those who gathered for a re-dedication ceremony for veterans who are buried at Riverside Cemetery.

(Goodwin photo)