Cranbrook Cenotaph names get a touch-up

Legion members repaint 166 names, marking three wars, for the first time in monument’s history

The Cranbrook Cenotaph is getting a touch up, 99 years later.

Larry Miller and Bob Muir, members of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 24 Cranbrook, were down in Rotary Park this week, repainting the 166 names engraved on the Cenotaph. The names had faded into the same colour as the stone over the decades, making them difficult to read.

Miller and Muir were repainting the names with special monument paint, gifted by Kootenay Granite. Miller applied the paint with an airbrush. But first, a layer of wallpaper glue was set down over the names, to protect the stone outside the names from the overspray. The glue was then scraped off, leaving the names standing out with the new paint.

This was the first time the names had been touched up in the Cenotaph’s history.

The plans for the original cenotaph originated in June, 1920, at a Cranbrook City Hall meeting. Sufficient funds were raised and the memorial cenotaph was unveiled at a ceremony at the Great War Veterans Association Building, now the site of the Byng Hotel, in April, 1921 — the fifth anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge.

In August, 1926, the memorial was moved to the new location in front of the government office on Baker Street — now the site of Safeway. It remained there until 1968, when it was moved to the entrance of Rotary Park. It has since been moved to its current location in the middle of the park.

The names on the Cenotaph commemorate those who fought in three wars: the Great War of 1914-1918; the Secondary World War of 1939-1945; and the Korean War of 1950-1953.

Nearby is the Wall of Honour. The idea for this commemorative monument in Rotary Park originated with the firefighters in 1987, with a committee consisting of both Cranbrook firefighters and Legion members. In 1995, the Wall of Honour was turned over to the Legion by the Cranbrook firefighters.

In 1999 the Wall was updated, including the painting of the mural on the west side, an informational plaque and the engraving of additional names. Cranbrook artist Joseph Cross painted the mural, which depicts in succession scenes from the Boer War, the Great War, the Second World War, the Korean War and Canada’s many peacekeeping forces.

The mural was dedicated on May 8, 2000, the 55th anniversary of V-E Day.

The engraving was completed in September, 2000.

The Legion continues to engrave names as they are brought to its attention.

Pictured below: Bob Muir, Michael Landry and Larry Miller at the Cenotaph in Rotary Park in Cranbrook. The names on the left side have been repainted. The first column of names on the right side have been painted, and are in the process of being cleaned up. The second column of names are awaiting the new paint, and are barely visible against the rest of the stone. Barry Coulter photo

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here


Just Posted

Annual Cops for Kids cycling fundraiser tweaked amid COVID-19

Cops for Kids events in Cranbrook will look a little different due… Continue reading

RDEK lends support to group seeking a weir on Lake Koocanusa

Regional district to send a letter to province, feds supporting local concerns over reservoir water levels

It happened in 1913

August 9 - 15: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the newspapers at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

Smoky skies bulletin issued for Kimberley, Cranbrook

The area is likely to be impacted by wildfire smoke over the next 24 to 48 hours: Interior Health

Maddisun releases album ‘Self Reflections’

After years of songwriting and playing shows in the East Kootenay area,… Continue reading

‘Don’t kill my mom’: Ryan Reynolds calls on young British Columbians to be COVID-smart

‘Deadpool’ celebrity responds to premier’s call for social influence support

A pre-pre-back to school Hugs and Slugs

Hugs: To the BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association for standing against hatred… Continue reading

Which Lives Matter?

Yme Woensdregt Much too often, in conversations about the Black Lives Matter… Continue reading

Captain Horvat’s OT marker lifts Canucks to 4-3 win over Blues

Vancouver takes 2-0 lead in best-of-7 NHL playoff series with St. Louis

Widow of slain Red Deer doctor thanks community for support ahead of vigil

Fellow doctors, members of the public will gather for a physically-distanced vigil in central Alberta

Protesters showcase massive old yellow cedar as Port Renfrew area forest blockade continues

9.5-foot-wide yellow cedar measured by Ancient Forest Alliance campaigners in Fairy Creek watershed

Taking dog feces and a jackhammer to neighbourhood dispute costs B.C. man $16,000

‘Pellegrin’s actions were motivated by malice …a vindictive, pointless, dangerous and unlawful act’

Racist stickers at Keremeos pub leaves group uneasy and angry

The ‘OK’ hand gesture is a known hate-symbol

Most Read