“This is a very pleasurable experience for me,” said 101 Squadron Vice-president Russ Hellberg at the regular meeting of District of Port Hardy council Oct. 11.
After years of coming to council with bad news, Hellberg was able to let them know the Cenotaph project has “finally come to fruition. We’re happy it’s done. It’s yours,” said Hellberg.
Deputy Mayor Pat Corbett-Labatt commented on “how amazing the Cenotaph looks in the daytime and in the evening.”
By including First Nations in the Cenotaph, including the caption ‘We fought together, We remember together’, “you quietly went ahead and fulfilled some of the recommendations (of the Truth & Reconciliation Commission),” said Councillor Fred Robertson.
Once they had the grant dollars in hand, the new Cenotaph was built in just over a month.
Hellberg said this was the best project he has ever worked on, and that everyone involved “really put their heart into it.”
The official opening, which will include dedications of both the Cenotaph and totem pole will be held Nov. 11 starting at 10:40 a.m.
Still to be done is a replacement totem on Market Street in front of the Visitor Information Centre. “At some point you’ll have to have a talk and see what you want to do with that,” said Hellberg.