75th anniversary of the Dieppe Raid - Calgary Event
On August 19, 2017, a ceremony was held to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Dieppe Raid at The Military Museums in Calgary, Alberta.
The Dieppe Raid:
The Dieppe Raid began before dawn on August 19, 1942. The operation was intended to test German defences, practice Allied assault techniques, force the enemy to divert military resources from the Eastern Front and acquire valuable intelligence. Supported by British and American commandos, almost 5,000 Canadian soldiers took part in the attack on the occupied French port of Dieppe. Sadly, it would prove to be the bloodiest single day of the entire Second World War for Canada; more than 3,350 of our soldiers were killed, wounded or taken prisoner.
75th anniversary of the Dieppe Raid- Calgary Event:
- Arrival of participants
- Reception with the presentation of a Mount Royal University Military Memorial Bursary in the name of Captain Douglas Purdy.
- Optional guided tour. Dignitaries and invited guests will be guided through the King’s Own Calgary Regiment gallery (access off the atrium in The Military Museums main level).
King’s Own Calgary Regiment:
- The 14th Army Tank Regiment (The Calgary Regiment [Tank ]) was mobilized in February 1941 and became the first Canadian tank regiment to go into battle, as well as the first to engage in an amphibious assault during the Second World War.
- On August 19, 1942, the 14th Army Tank Regiment (The Calgary Regiment [Tank]) went into action for the first time during the Dieppe Raid. The regiment contributed to the main attack on the beaches of Dieppe, where they were put ashore 10-15 minutes late and were brought to a halt by heavy enemy fire, a seawall, and the pebble beach which damaged the tanks’ tracks. The regiment suffered 13 fatalities that day.
Churchill Tank Memorial in France:
- During the ill-fated Dieppe Raid, the 14th Army Tank Regiment (The Calgary Regiment [Tank]) formed what was called the “ring of steel” on the beach in an attempt to shield the Canadian infantrymen from enemy fire. The Churchill Tank Memorial is to commemorate this great bravery and sacrifice.
- At the centrepiece of this memorial will be a depiction of the “ring of steel” formed by the tank regiment. The memorial will also contain engraved maple leafs with the names of the 13 regiment members who were killed during the Dieppe Raid, as well as the number 167 to signify the number of its men who were taken as prisoners of war there.
Mount Royal University Military Memorial Bursary in the name of Captain Douglas Purdy:
- Following the ceremony, Mount Royal University will introduce those in attendance to the Military Memorial Bursaries, one of which is in the name of Mount Royal alumnus and Dieppe War casualty Captain Douglas Purdy. Ms. Kelly Ann Purdy, grandniece of Captain Purdy, will join recent bursary recipient Raghed Mirza in representing Mount Royal University.
- Mount Royal University Military Memorial Bursaries are awarded annually to 28 full-time students enrolled at Mount Royal University who are in financial need.
- The Memorial Bursary created in the name of Captain Douglas Purdy honours this former Mount Royal College student who was killed in action at Dieppe on August 19th, 1942.
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