Article as provided by Jim Dawson; CoChair of the Distr 7090 HIP Cttee.
 
From: Garry Flood <flood.garry.gmail.com@clubrunner.email>
Date: Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 10:48 AM
Subject: National Indigenous Veterans Day- Nov. 8
To: Garry Flood <flood.garry@gmail.com>
 
 
The First Nations, Inuit and Métis of Canada have a long and proud tradition of military service to our country.
 
The First World War raged from 1914 to 1918 and more than 4,000 Indigenous people served in uniform during the conflict earning at least 50 decorations for bravery.
 
Many of these soldiers become successful snipers (military sharpshooters) and reconnaissance scouts (men who stealthily gathered information on enemy positions). Indigenous soldiers earned at least 50 decorations for bravery during the war. Henry Louis Norwest, a Métis from Alberta and one of the most famous snipers of the entire Canadian Corps, held a divisional sniping record of 115 fatal shots and was awarded the Military Medal and bar for his courage under fire.
 
Of the 4,000 Indigenous men and women who enlisted in WWI, none were provided the post-war benefits available to non-Indigenous veterans – land, loans, education. 
 
When the Second World War erupted over 3,000 First Nations members, as well as an unknown number of Métis, Inuit and other Indigenous recruits, had served in uniform. 
 
Willard Bolduc, an Ojibwa airman from Ontario, earned the Distinguished Flying Cross
Tommy Prince, an Ojibwa from Manitoba was second-in-command of a rifle platoon that subsequently was awarded the United States Presidential Unit Citation for its distinguished service.
 
First Nations veterans received a one-time pay out of less than half what non-Indigenous veterans were able to access.
To add insult to injury some reserves even had land appropriated by the government to give to returning non-Indigenous veterans.
 
Further, following World War II, some Indigenous veterans returned from the war to discover they had lost their ‘status’ as a result of being absent from their reserves for more than four years, a provision of the Indian Act at that time.
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