On Friday, October 11, 2018, Canada’s Minister of Veterans Affairs Seamus O’Regan ’85 visited his alma mater. First, Minister O’Regan joined our high school students in the Aula Maxima – where he once regularly dominated the oratorical competitions – for a presentation on life in the trenches during The Great War for The Royal Newfoundland Regiment by Ph. D. candidate Chris Reid. Minister O’Regan and Mr. Reid then joined the high school students in a thoughtful and reflective discussion on the differences for war veterans today returning home compared to those after the First World War. He also unveiled the 2018 Canadian Veterans Affairs poster in recognition of the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, as well as gifted the school with framed copies.
After the session with the high school students, Minister O’Regan unveiled a very important plaque. In 1922, Sir M.P. Cashin, President of the St. Bon’s Association, erected a tablet honouring St. Bon’s students and alumni who served in The Great War. That tablet still graces our main entrance of Mullock Hall. In 2017, it was discovered that Captain Robert Kent, M. C. attended St. Bon’s before moving to Quebec, where he enlisted in the Canadian Field Artillery, though he was not included on the original tablet. Minister O’Regan graciously accepted an invitation to rectify this omission by unveiling and addendum plaque honouring Captain Kent in the presence of our Student Council, Principal Annette Mallay and President Tom McGrath.
Remembrance is a concept St. Bon’s holds with a high importance, continually endeavouring to instil in our students a sense of respect and reflection for those who have served. We thank Minster O’Regan for providing our students with this opportunity to have a better understanding of the sacrifices made in The Great War.