New Brunswick town puts plan for armoured vehicle memorial on hold

A Ferret Scout Car, used by the Canadian military, is seen at the Sackville Memorial Park in Sackville, New Brunswick on Wednesday, June 19, 2019. Plans to install another retired armoured fighting vehicle, known as a Cougar AVGP, given to the town from the 8th Canadian Hussars (Princess Louise's) regiment, has been put on hold until after a public session on the matter in early July. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan

Work to install an armoured military vehicle in a New Brunswick town has been put on hold after an outcry from dozens of town residents.

The 8th Canadian Hussars regiment donated the retired Cougar AVGP vehicle to Sackville in February, and the town council decided to install it in its Memorial Park, which already features another military vehicle.

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But some residents say they only learned of the plan in recent weeks and don’t want the vehicle anywhere in the town.

Alex Thomas says it’s important to recognize the regiment’s long connection with the town and the 55 members who died fighting fascism in Italy in the Second World War, but the Cougar is a modern vehicle that represents military violence.

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Jim Lockyer, honorary colonel of the 8th Canadian Hussars, says the vehicle doesn’t glorify conflict but is a monument to the tragedy of war.

He says Canadian Forces have fought for the ability to have this kind of public debate and will be satisfied with whatever the town council decides.

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