Every year, Ruth Brooks, youth education chair with the Bradford West Gwillimbury legion, contacts local schools to encourage students to enter the legion’s Remembrance Poster, Essay and Poem Competitions.
And every year, young artists and writers submit their works, expressing their thoughts on remembrance, loss, service, war and peace.
Winners at the local level have the opportunity to advance to Zone Competition, or even District, competing against entries from across Ontario.
On Sunday, the Bradford legion invited contestants and their parents to an awards ceremony to congratulate the winners, display their work, and present certificates and cash prizes.
Intermediate Essay. Kayla Ferreira was the runner-up, Ruby Cameron won third place, Celine Handal took second place, and Charlotte Lotter won first place.
Lotter’s essay was portrait of the late Bert Hogg, a Second World War veteran who often shared his war-time experiences with Bradford school children for Remembrance Day.
“I sat down with him and asked him these questions,” said Lotter, who was asked to read her essay at the legion.
She said Hogg had joined the Armed Forces during the Depression, when he was actually still too young to sign up. “He lied about his age. He said he was born in 1919, not 1920,” Lotter said. “He wasn’t expecting to be called overseas,” but saw action as a medic in Europe.
Hogg passed away on June 20, 2018, at the age of 95. Son John Hogg was in the audience at the legion, as Lotter read her prize-winning essay.
Jr. Essay. Michael Zini won first prize at the Bradford legion; his essay placed second at Zone.
Intermediate Poem. In third place was Jason Kokol, second place was Allison Kralt, and first place was Wynn Purdy.
Junior Poem. Second place went to Reanna Gottfried, and first place to Faith Ahmad.
Intermed. Black & White Poster. Runner-up was Matthew Filipe, third place was Isabella DiManno, second place was Kaitlyn Matchem, and first place was Victoria Myrow.
Myrow’s poster went on to win second place at Zone.
Jr. Black & White Poster. Runner-up was Vincent Tran, third place was Reanna Gottfried, second place was Gabriel Chavez-Day, and first place was Claire Ferguson.
Intermed. Colour Poster. Runner-up was Jayden Argeka, third place was Celine Handal, second place was Andreia Silva, and first place was Avodhya Solomon.
Avodhya’s colourful poster went on to win first at Zone, and place second at District.
Jr. Colour Poster. Faith Ahmad's poster was second, and Owen Kralt placed first.
Primary Colour Poster. In third place was David Chung, second place was Adam Wu, and first place was Jisoo Seo, who also placed third at Zone.
Kindergarten Poster (Special Class). Natalie White placed third, Atticus Moore got second, and Lily Marven won first.
“It’s great to see so many young people here,” said BWG Mayor Rob Keffer.
He congratulated the legion “for letting our young people shine, grow, and have an opportunity to show off their talents.”