by Kevan Pipe
The Glebe Report has been publishing a story with each edition for the past 10 months about the short life of a soldier or airman from St. Matthew’s Anglican Church killed in action in the First World War. This series will continue until the November 9, 2018 edition when the final three stories will be told, two days before the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice between Germany and the Allied forces bringing hostilities to a most somber conclusion. Millions of soldiers on each side were killed during this tragic conflict in addition to tens of millions of civilians across Europe.
“The 48 of St. Matthew’s” reveals the long-forgotten stories behind the 16 men from the church killed in the Great War as well as 32 men killed in action during the Second World War. To further commemorate the memories of these men, we were able to secure the assistance of the staff and students of Glebe Collegiate Institute’s Grade 12 Communications Technology class in the development and production of a full-sized commemorative print that will be unveiled both at Glebe Collegiate and St. Matthew’s on the weekend of November 11. Twenty of the 32 men from the church from the Second World War attended Glebe Collegiate and are remembered on commemorative plaques hung in both institutions.
Their course teacher Toby Rosenbloom led students Miguel Dinis and Eric Thiele while they spent a considerable amount of time pulling together all the information and pictures provided to them for each of The 48 and creating profiles for each serviceman, assembling them into a beautiful 40 x 50-inch print to be hung in perpetuity at both locales. Although their course work was completed in January, they contributed significant volunteer hours this past winter to bring the project to a final and most fitting conclusion. Their creativity has resulted in a beautiful tribute to the memory of these fallen heroes from our community.
Copies of the print will be available for purchase in October or November with 100 per cent of proceeds going to support St. Matthew’s refugee assistance program (FACES) as well as our church’s support of Cornerstone Housing for Women, which provides emergency shelter and safe supportive housing for women in need in Ottawa. Information on this offer will be available in the October edition of the Glebe Report.
Our thanks are extended to Miguel and Eric for their wonderful dedication and commitment to this unique project. They are graduating from Glebe this month and then both will be attending Queen’s University in Kingston in September. On behalf of St. Matthew’s, we wish them well in their academic pursuits in the years to come and for helping us to pay tribute to The 48 in such a unique manner.
A very big and heartfelt message of thanks as well to the Glebe Collegiate Institute and particularly to Toby Rosenbloom whose leadership and interest in this project has resulted in a wonderful success. Our schoolteachers are community assets whose efforts help to inspire and build our citizens of tomorrow.
Kevan Pipe is a Glebe resident and member of the St Matthew’s Anglican Church Communications Committee. For more information on The 48 of St. Matthew’s, please visit www.the48ofstmatthews.ca.