TORONTO – The Ontario government plans to further honour Canada’s fallen soldiers by planting 117,000 trees along the Highway of Heroes beginning in 2016.
The province announced it will place one tree along Highway 401 between Trenton and Toronto for every soldier who has been killed serving Canada since Confederation.
“Toronto welcomes the final stage of a fallen soldier’s journey,” said MPP of York Centre Monte Kwinter in a media release.
“This tribute will remind those traveling the highway of the great appreciation and respect we owe those who fought and sacrificed for our country.”
The province said the tree planting will also provide additional environmental benefits such as increasing canopy cover, erosion control, wind breaks, pollinator species and greening along portions of the highway.
“It allows us to honour the men and women who have given their lives in service of our country. At the same time, it allows us to continue the greening of our highways for healthier communities and a lasting legacy for future generations,” said Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca.
The planting will be done in partnership with Forests Ontario and Highway of Heroes Tribute and take five years to complete.
A ceremonial tree will also be placed on each end of the Highway of Heroes at CFB Trenton and outside the Coroner’s Office at Keele Street in Toronto.
The highway tribute was established in 2007 to represent the final journey of Canadian men and women who died in service.