A flag honouring the historic contributions of Royal Canadian Engineers could soon be flapping in the breeze in Chilliwack.
A request by the Retired Sappers Association Chilliwack to have the Royal Canadian Engineers’ flag permanently flown at All Sappers Memorial Park was approved by council this week.
Robert Frigon, president of the Retired Sappers, spent 33 years serving with the military engineers before retiring in Chilliwack in 1994.
“When I see that flag, it brings back a lot of memories,” Frigon told The Progress. “I remember the guys I was honoured to serve with, those who passed away, and the job we did for Canada.”
CFB Chilliwack, now redeveloped as Garrison Crossing, was once home of the Canadian Forces School of Military Engineering. The All Sappers Memorial Park, which is at the corner of Vedder and Keith Wilson Roads, was designed and built by sappers, also known as combat engineers, in 1946.
“Seeing the flag flown all day every day, and not just a few times a year, is something we’re looking forward to,” said Frigon. “It matters because it’s a representation of who built the park.”
After CFB Chilliwack closed in 1998, Canada Lands Company (CLC) took over custodianship of All Sappers Park.
Then about a decade later, City of Chilliwack took over the responsibility of maintenance in perpetuity in order “to continue to recognize the sacrifices of military engineers in both peacetime and war.”
The staff report recommended going ahead with the idea.
“Adding a flagpole for the Royal Canadian Engineers flag, operated and maintained by the Retired Sappers Association Chilliwack, is considered appropriate, given the history of this location,” said a staff report.
“It would honour Chilliwack’s military history and serve the City’s agreement to preserve All Sappers Memorial Park.”
City reps will work with the Retired Sappers Association Chilliwack in order to best position the red and blue flag within All Sappers Memorial Park.
The cost for the new flagpole is estimated at $6,000, and could be covered by the parks budget, according to staff.