Canadian veterans in Sudbury call local legion a second home
Even though Canadian Legions have been closed most of the year due to the pandemic, veterans in the Sudbury area say it’s still a special place for them.
Dozens of veterans were in attendance Thursday after the Remembrance Day ceremony at the Lockerby Legion. They said the legion is a place they think of as a second home, and always have.
“If I have a problem, I’ve got someone I can share it with. I’m not just out on the street and that’s one of the things,” said John McNeil, Canadian veteran.
“Coming back to the legion was a good thing for me really. It would help me out all during my career coming into the legion. It feels great just being here with them,” said Peter Vos, another veteran.
Daryl Adams served in the Canadian military for 12 years. His father, who served in the Second World War, was one of the co-founders of the Lockerby Legion.
Adams said the legion has always been a special place, ever since he was young.
“It’s a collective gathering point for like-minded veterans, military personal," he said. "It’s a place they can meet, talk, chat and it’s a place that reminds them of the environment that they served in.
“When someone gets out of the military, they miss those opportunities to break bread, talk and meet and greet, and share stories.”
Officials with the Lockerby Legion said they have played a vital role for veterans, especially during the pandemic.
“The veterans themselves have really appreciated what we’ve done for them,” said Jennifer Huard, president of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 564.
“We have drop-in centres running once a month, where it’s a veterans-only event and they can gather, socialize, help each other -- especially right now with what’s going on in Afghanistan. The veterans are really struggling and we’re happy to be supporting them.”
The veterans said every day is a day for them to celebrate their legion family.