August 23: International Impact in Prince Albert

Even in small cities like Prince Albert, Saskatchewan the Portraits of Honour Tour is having an international impact.

During the touching ceremony held near the municipal building and war memorials from past Canadian conflicts, those gathered in Prince Albert not only honoured those on the mural, but also honoured local fallen hero Darby Morin, a Canadian who had been serving with the U.S. army in Afghanistan, killed in August of 2009. In this way the Portraits of Honour is acting as a catalyst for remembrance beyond simply viewing the mural, something organizers, supporters and the artist himself have hoped for since the project's inception. 

The impact of the Portraits of Honour as a tool for remembrance reaches overseas as well. A gentleman who had been a child during World War II and is now the Mayor of a small town in Normandy, France, was in attendance to view the Portraits of Honour. He visits Prince Albert each year to pay tribute to a Canadian pilot that had been kind to him during his youth and had died in a plane crash near his home in Normandy at the hands of German forces. 

Though much time has passed, he spoke of how brave Canadians have always left their safe and beautiful country to go to places where danger exists in order to help those who desperatly need it. " 70 years ago we in Europe cried for help, and Canadians came, " he said, "now, innocents in Afghanistan call upon them and they come willingly. That is why Canadians deserve our love and respect. We hope there never comes a day when our call goes unanswered, the world needs you."