Proud of those who serve

A message from the Chief Operating Officer

Every November, we honour the military personnel and veterans who have been part of Deer Lodge Centre (formerly the Deer Lodge Hospital) for more than 100 years.

From the trauma surgery and emergency care we provided in our early years, to the mental health services and long-term care we offer today, Deer Lodge Centre (DLC) has adapted its services in response to the needs of military members and veterans.

Supported through additional funding by Veterans Affairs Canada, DLC has provided enhanced services for long-term care veteran residents, and is in the process of significantly expanding the existing Operational Stress Injury Clinic (OSIC). The OSIC provides mental health treatment to current military personnel, veterans of all ages, RCMP, and families of clinic patients.

While it is sometimes difficult to personally relate to wars and conflicts that happened decades ago, or before we were born, our military personnel and veterans continue to experience similar situations today. So, whether it is a 95-year-old veteran from the Second World War or a 35-year-old having served in Afghanistan, it is essential we validate their experience through our healthcare and ceremonial events.

Our words, symbols, and actions have meaning and reflect our view of those we serve. Every November, and at other times during the year for important anniversaries, Veterans Week events demonstrate that lessons and sacrifices of the past won’t be forgotten. This isn’t about living in the past, or not letting go of the past, but teaching current and future generations what it took to defend the freedoms we might take for granted. Children looking at grandparents, or even their parents, have an opportunity to better understand the experience of their relatives and the significant contributions they made to Canada and to others in the world. What did it mean to the child from Holland or Afghanistan who was helped by a Canadian?

On November 11 at Deer Lodge Centre’s Remembrance Day Ceremony, current military from various branches attend, with the 17 Wing Commander participating in the ceremony. Having been a part of the service for many years, I’m always moved to see the high level of respect paid to older veterans by current serving members of the military. The bond of their shared experiences is unmistakable.

Deer Lodge Centre will continue to support current military personnel and veterans through expanded or modified healthcare, and to honour them with our ceremonial activities. We are proud to serve those that serve.

Kevin A. Scott
Chief Operating Officer, Deer Lodge Centre