Two Profiles of Courage of note for this time period include:
Ainsworth Dyer ~ Ainsworth Dyer was born in Montreal and grew up in Toronto. He enlisted in the Canadian Forces in 1996 and would go on to become a member of the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry.
Mature and responsible, Dyer was well-respected by his colleagues. He took on many challenges including training for the military’s gruelling “Mountain Man” endurance competition, qualifying as a paratrooper and serving in Canadian Forces peace support efforts in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 2000.
Corporal Dyer was taking part in night training in Afghanistan on April 17, 2002 when his position was bomber by an American warplane in a friendly fire incident at Tarnak Farms. Sadly, he and three other Canadians were killed and eight more were injured. Dyer was just 24 years old.
The fallen soldier was buried with full military honours in the Necropolis Cemetery in Toronto. The Royal Canadian Legion named his mother, Mrs. Agatha Dyer, the 2004 National Silver Cross Mother.
Mark Graham ~ Born in Jamaica, Mark Graham moved to Hamilton, Ontario as a child. In 2004, he answered the call to serve and enlisted in the Canadian Forces. Private Graham was sent to Afghanistan with the Royal Canadian Regiment. He was an excellent role model for the younger soldiers and had an excellent record of efficiency in his unit. Tragically, the then 33 year old was killed by friendly fire on September 4, 2006, when his platoon was mistakenly attacked by an American warplane during an operation to capture a Taliban stronghold.
Graham is buried at the National Military Cemetery in Ottawa and, in 2010, a Hamilton park where he had played as a boy was renamed “Mark Anthony Graham Memorial Olympic Park” in his honour.