A granite monument listing the 162 names of Canadian men and women who were killed in Afghanistan have been added to the Lacombe Afghanistan Memorial site.
Last summer the LAV III light armoured vehicle was added to Lacombe’s Fairview Cemetery’s Field of Honour. The monument is dedicated to Canada’s Afghanistan mission and the 40,000 who served there including Lacombe’s Master Cpl. Byron Greff who was the last Canadian killed in Afghanistan in 2011.
Calvin Swarbrick, Lacombe Afghanistan Memorial Committee member and construction coordinator, said 158 of those died are Canadian soldiers. The remaining four were civilians.
The recently added monument comes with a price tag of $60,000.
Swarbrick said the community has been generous when volunteers went out to sell LAV III stickers for windows and cars. The County of Lacombe donated about $8,000. High school students in Lacombe also got involved raising about $1,000. Another huge sum came from corporate sponsors.
“People were interested – they had no problem donating for this cause,” said the legion treasurer.
He said in the next coming weeks, the memorial will be decorated with a bronze plaque for donors and committee member names.
Swarbrick said he believes there are three Afghanistan memorials in Alberta – in Lacombe, Airdrie, and Fort McMurray.
The monument is three-foot-wide and five-and-a-half-foot tall with names on both sides. The list starts with those who died in a chronological order on the front side and carries on to the back. The very last name – Greff – is engraved in gold.
Greff, 28, was in the 3rd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry and part of a NATO convoy attacked by a suicide bomber on Oct. 29, 2011.
Greff and 16 others died in the explosion.