For immediate release (Calgary, May 1, 2020)
Given the lockdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic in England and around the world, the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Foundation (UCCLF) and its partners have postponed the unveiling of a memorial stained-glass window in London, originally scheduled for May 8, 2020 – the 75th anniversary of V-E (Victory in Europe) Day.
Over the past several years, the UCCLF team has worked hard to ensure that the service and sacrifices of the thousands of Ukrainian Canadians who served overseas during the Second World War, and Ukrainians who did likewise in the armed forces of the other Allied powers, would be recalled on this historic date.
Commenting, UCCLF’s chairman, Borys Sydoruk, said:
"Obviously, we are disappointed at not being able to witness the unveiling of this commemorative stained-glass window on May 8. Other possible dates are now being considered, public health and safety considerations permitting. In the meantime, we will be reaching out to surviving veterans and their families by mailing some 3,500 postcards across Canada and internationally, calling attention to the importance of this date and the contributions of Ukrainian Canadians in uniform. We have also organized publication of a half-page notice in the May 8 edition of The Globe and Mail, recalling how these men and women volunteered for service overseas, demonstrating their loyalty to Canada by defending our way of life. Some veterans then remained in Europe for several more years, helping to save Ukrainian Displaced Persons (DPs) from forcible repatriation to the Soviet Union. Those victims of Nazi and Communist tyranny were eventually resettled across the free world, helping to strengthen the Ukrainian diaspora we are part of today, whether we live in England, the USA, Australia, western Europe or here in Canada. And many of us are the children and grandchildren of the very same political refugees these Canadian Ukrainians rescued. Simply put, we would not be here today if it were not for the men and women in uniform who saved the DPs. So, on May 8, the 75th anniversary of the end of the war in Europe, V-E Day, we call upon our friends and supporters across Canada, and indeed around the world, to remember the Ukrainian Canadians who were the 'heroes of their day'."
For more information about the Heroes of their Day project, or to donate in support of this initiative, please go to: https://www.ucclf.ca/heroes-of-their-day
The artist's image of the commemorative stained glass window to be installed at St. James's Parish, Paddington, London, England, once conditions allow.