VALCARTIER, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - June 9, 2012) - The Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs, participated in a ceremony at the Valcartier Family Centre paying tribute to the Honourable Gilles Lamontagne. Minister Blaney joined the Valcartier Family Centre team, Veterans and numerous dignitaries to honour Mr. Lamontagne, a Veteran and politician, for his unwavering commitment to military families.
"Canadian Veterans contribute to the development of their communities. Through his dedication and his involvement, Mr. Lamontagne has kept the memory alive of the accomplishments of Veterans and the Canadian Forces in his community and in Canada," stated Minister Blaney. "And to this day, Mr. Lamontagne continues to make the most of his experience by getting involved with the Valcartier Family Centre."
Mr. Lamontagne started out as a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1941, and his aircraft was attacked by a German fighter plane in 1943. He parachuted into Holland and was captured by the Germans. He spent 27 months in prison camps. After his return, he left the military in August 1945 and settled in Quebec City. In 1951, he re-enlisted in the Air Force Reserve where he served until 1959.
Later, he became the Mayor of Québec City and then, at the end of his term, became a member of the House of Commons. He has held the positions of Postmaster General, Minister of National Defence and Minister of Veterans Affairs. He was appointed as the lieutenant governor of Quebec from 1984 to 1990, and was named Honorary Colonel of the Royal Canadian Air Force Reserve in 1987.
His contribution to public and political life is marked by his support and his loyalty to those who have fought and who continue to fight in the name of peace. Besides his military service, Mr. Lamontagne is involved and participates actively in various commemorative activities organized in his community and at the provincial level.
"Our Government is pleased to be able to pay tribute to Mr. Lamontagne. His commitment to military families over the course of his career and to this day is exemplary," added Minister Blaney.
To discover stories from other Canadian Veterans, visit the Heroes Remember page at veterans.gc.ca