Motorcyclists exit off of Highway 1 at Lickman Road during last year's Memorial Ride for the Fallen.

Highway 1 renamed Highway of Heroes

B.C. is getting its own Highway of Heroes.

B.C. is getting its own Highway of Heroes, the Ministry of Transportation is expected to announce this week.

This Saturday – the same day as the second annual Memorial Ride for the Fallen – the Ministry of Transportation will be unveiling a section of Highway 1, from the 152nd exit in Surrey to the Sumas exit in Abbotsford, which is being renamed Highway of Heroes.

All thanks to a Chilliwack-based organization wanting to pay its respects.

The 3rd CAV (Canadian Army Veterans) Ubique Unit, consisting of army veterans and supporters of veterans, got the ball rolling for the name change last year with its first ever Memorial Ride for the Fallen.

Vice president Barry Drews pegged the motorcycling event as the West Coast Highway of Heroes.

“It was the perfect wording,” he said.

Just two weeks after the CAV’s memorial ride, Drews got a call from the Ministry of Transportation interested in creating a West Coast Highway of Heroes and wanting input from Drews.

Nearly a year passed without another word on the matter. But when the CAV selected the Honour House Society for this year’s charity, they were introduced to Honour House president Allan de Genova, a former Vancouver parks commissioner. Drews said de Genova’s political connections helped speed up the process.

“Allan was instrumental in helping us get the unveiling of the Highway of Heroes on the day of our event … what would normally have taken 40 weeks, took us four,” said Drews.

“This is big, huge. It’s never been done before in western Canada and it’s way overdue.”

Highway of Heroes originates from Ontario where on Highway 401, from CFB Trenton to the coroners office in Toronto, hundreds of people have lined the overpasses along the route since 2002 to pay their respects every time a fallen soldier returns home from Afghanistan. That portion of the highway was officially renamed Highway of Heroes in 2007.

“It is touching beyond belief,” said Drews. “We need something like that here … a number of fallen soldiers have come from B.C and we haven’t had a place to pay our respects. This is a way for people to honour our fallen soldiers and it’s also a sign of respect to the families of the fallen. It’s a constant reminder that we as Canadians care and that their losses will never be forgotten, that it wasn’t for nothing.”

An 18-by-8-foot sign will be posted at each exit that says Highway of Heroes, a dedication to the fallen and their families.

Just Posted

Watercolours by late Chilliwack artist to be unveiled at Yarrow Library

The public is invited to a special unveiling of three of Heinz Klassen’s watercolour paintings

Yarrow Library one of the stops on Cubetto’s grand tour

FVRL’s friendly wooden robot, Cubetto, travels throughout Fraser Valley to teach programming basics

No home for Agassiz Community Garden on school district land

The garden is still homeless after SD78 said no to the society using the McCaffrey School property

Chilliwack PEO: ‘We who are sisters’

International oganization celebrating 150 years of service

Chilliwack students take the lead as mental health advocates

About 100 Chilliwack youth prepped to make a difference during Mental Health Week

Dashcam captures close call between minivan, taxi at busy Vancouver intersection

To make the footage more nerve-wracking, a pedestrian can be seen standing at the corner

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

VIDEO: Fire guts Peachland home

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze in the Okanagan neighbourhood

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Seattle’s 4-20 ‘protestival’ enjoys tolerance, some support – and B.C. could do the same

Seattle’s Hempfest a large-scale occasions with vendors, prominent musical acts and thousands of attendees

Most Read