OTTAWA – The Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, along with the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs Canada, announced today the creation of the Memorial Ribbon. The Memorial Ribbon will be offered to close family and friends of deceased Canadian Forces (CF) members as a memento of personal loss and sacrifice.
“Our Government has enormous respect for the men and women who have made sacrifices in service of their country. The introduction of the Memorial Ribbon reflects our Government’s desire to provide a small token of remembrance to those close to our military members who passed away while in service of Canada,” said Minister MacKay. “The Government of Canada is determined to do everything it can to support Canada’s heroes and their families. With the new Memorial Ribbon, our Government’s ensuring that those who are not usually designated as potential recipients of the Memorial Cross will be able to honour their loved ones by wearing this Ribbon with pride.”
Memorial Ribbons may be issued in commemoration of every CF member whose death is attributed to injury or illness sustained on or after October 1, 1947, due to military service. This date coincides with the first date inscribed in Veterans Affairs Canada’s Seventh Book of Remembrance.
“The Memorial Ribbon is a profound demonstration of our care and concern for Canada’s military families — not just the men and women who bravely serve our country, but their families and other loved ones who have sacrificed so much for us,” said Minister Blaney. “This is a fitting complement to the Memorial Cross. It reflects how deeply loved and dearly missed our fallen heroes are.”
The Memorial Ribbon will now be part of the Memorial Package, which currently includes the Memorial Cross, the Memorial Scroll, the Memorial Bar, the Sacrifice Medal, and inscription in the Seventh Book of Remembrance. For those eligible recipients whose beneficiaries have previously received the Memorial Package without the Memorial Ribbon, the ribbons will be sent separately to the executor of the estate upon written request.
The Department of National Defence’s Directorate of Honours and Recognition is the office responsible for the administration of the Memorial Ribbon, which will be available in early 2013.