View looking east along ‘Nan White’ Beach, showing personnel of the 9th Canadian Infantry Brigade landing from LCI(L) 299 of the 2nd Canadian (262nd RN) Flotilla on D-Day. (CP PHOTO) 1998 (National Archives of Canada-Gilbert Alexandre Milne) PA-137013

Mint to make special toonies to mark D-Day anniversary

Coins will commemorate 75th anniversary of 150,000 Allied troops storming the beaches at Normandy

The Royal Canadian Mint is creating two commemorative coins to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day.

The Liberal cabinet approved the design of the new toonies, one of which will have multiple colours instead of the usual two-toned coin, to commemorate a key turning point in the Second World War.

READ MORE: World leaders gather in Paris to mark 100 years since end of First World War

On June 6, 1944 a combined force of about 150,000 Allied troops, made up of largely of Canadian, American and British soldiers, stormed the beaches on France’s Normandy coast, coming up against Nazi troops in concrete fortified gun positions.

About 14,000 Canadians were involved in the assault, known as Operation Overlord. Canada also contributed some 110 ships and 15 fighter and bomber squadrons.

On D-Day, 359 Canadians died as they ran from boats onto Juno Beach and more than 1,000 were injured.

The invasion marked the start of months of fighting to free France from Nazi occupation and would eventually lead to victory in Europe.

The Mint regularly creates commemorative coins to mark these kinds of anniversaries, having done so earlier this year with three million limited-edition toonies to mark the 100th anniversary of the armistice that ended the First World War in 1918.

And in 2014, for the 70th anniversary of D-Day, the Mint created a commemorative silver coin depicting soldiers in full battle gear disembarking a landing craft towards Juno Beach. But the Mint only created 8,400 of the coins, for collectors. The new toonies are to be “circulation” coins, used as regular money.

Alex Reeves, a spokesman for the Mint, said the Crown corporation couldn’t discuss the new coins because it doesn’t disclose information beyond what is published in official notices prior to the launch of a new commemorative coin.

The government order says the D-Day toonies will have an image of four soldiers and one sailor, all wearing helmets and one holding a rifle, in a landing craft at Juno Beach.

The helmet of the middle soldier will be olive green on the coloured toonie.

There will also be renderings of a Canadian destroyer, barrage balloon and Spitfire fighter planes.

The terms “D-Day” and “Remember,” along with the French “Le Jour J” and “Souvenir” will be inscribed around the coins.

Separately, the Liberals have also approved a commemorative loonie to mark the 50th anniversary of Parliament’s decriminalizing homosexual acts.

Up until 1969, sexual acts between consenting same-sex adults were deemed crimes in Canada and punishable by jail time.

The loonie to be created by the Mint will have two faces overlapping to create one face, with a small hoop earring on the left ear, surrounded by wavy and curved lines, the official posting says.

The words “Equality” and the French “Egalite” will be inscribed on the coin along with the year.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Car fire
UPDATE: No injuries, cause of vehicle fire on Hardy Bay Road unknown at this time

Port Hardy Fire Rescue arrived on scene soon after and extinguished the fire.

The entrance to the Port Hardy aquatic centre. (Tyson Whitney - North Island Gazette)
Port Hardy to ‘revitalize’ old aquatic centre for 8.5 million

‘If everything goes as planned, there will be no tax increase to cover our portion of the costs’

North Island Votes. Campbell River Mirror graphic
Babchuk declared winner in North Island

Nearly three-quarters of votes counted and mail-in ballots still to come

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

FILE – Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry provides the latest update on the COVID-19 pandemic in the province during a press conference in the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Thursday, October 22, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. shatters COVID-19 records with 817 weekend cases; masks now expected indoors

Three people have died over the past three reporting periods

Commissioner Austin Cullen listens to introductions before opening statements at the Cullen Commission of Inquiry into Money Laundering in British Columbia, in Vancouver, on February 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. money laundering inquiry hears of $800,000 and more in bags, luggage, backpacks

The lottery corporation has said it consistently reported suspicious transactions to Fintrac

Some of the characters in the League of Legends video game. (Photo: na.leagueoflegends.com)
E-sports trial at B.C. high schools to start with ‘League of Legends’ team game

For fall launch, Vancouver’s GameSeta company partners with BC School Sports

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

RCMP have released more details regarding what led up to an arrest caught on video in Williams Lake Sunday, Oct. 26. (Facebook video screenshot)
Review launched after ‘high-risk, multi-jurisdictional’ chase, arrest in Williams Lake

RCMP launching a full review and code of conduct investigation

Freighter drags anchor towards Boulder Point Oct. 22. It came within 730 metres of the shore, according to maps from the Port of Nanaimo. (Photo submitted)
MacGregor introduces bill to address freighter anchorages along the South Coast

Concerns about the environment, noise, pollution and safety abundant

(Pxfuel)
B.C. limits events in private homes to household, plus ‘safe six’ amid COVID-19 surge

Henry issued a public health order limiting private gatherings to one household, plus a group of ‘safe six’ only

Most Read