The House of Commons Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities is pleased to announce that Merchant Navy war veteran Captain Paul Bender has agreed to participate in its upcoming study on ocean war graves.
Captain Bender joined the Merchant Navy in 1943, shortly before his 16th birthday. Canada’s Merchant Navy ships played a decisive role in Canada’s Second World War effort, transporting desperately needed equipment, fuel, goods and personnel around the world. The 12,000 men and women who served in Canada’s Merchant Navy faced great danger as its ships were prime targets for enemy action.
In 2013, Captain Bender initiated a project to have all warships that sank with loss of life legally designated as ocean war graves. Captain Bender, like many others in Canada and the international community, is concerned about increased looting and desecration of ocean war graves.
Over the past five years, Captain Bender has worked tirelessly to ensure adequate protection for the final resting places of Canada’s sailors and merchant mariners. The Committee is looking forward to exploring this important topic further and hearing the testimony of Captain Bender and other experts.
Captain Bender will appear before the Committee on Monday, March 19, 2018, at 4:30 p.m.
The Memory Project photo.