Definition of a veteran

A veteran is any former member of the Canadian Armed Forces who has been honourably discharged, who has successfully completed basic training.

Facts About Veterans

  • Of the approximately 649,300 veterans in Canada, more than 120,000 reside in Quebec.
  • Second World War and Korean War veterans (“war service”) represent 7.4% of Canadian veterans.
  • Women represent 12% of veterans in Canada.
  • There are 1,500 veterans leaving the military each year.
  • Of those leaving the military, 25% will have difficulty transitioning to civilian life.
  • Of those who experience difficulty in returning to civilian life, 80% are diagnosed with mental illness related to their service.
  • Veterans are 3x times more likely to be homeless.
  • Male veterans are 1.4 times more likely to commit suicide than the male Canadian general population.
  • Female veterans aged 50 years and older are 1.87 times more likely to commit suicide than the female Canadian general population.
  • The rate of suicide for veterans has increased by 10% over the past 40 years compared to a 29% drop among the regular population for the same time period.

The effects can be long-reaching and the transition from military life very difficult for one in four veterans. Research is ongoing, but the rate of depression, suicide and homeless is staggeringly high when compared to the Canadian general population. These men and women have represented our Canadian values throughout the world by providing assistance to the vulnerable, security for those in danger and demonstrating tolerance where it is the only way forward. The Foundation considers it a privilege to support the men and women of Canada who have served their country in uniform, both overseas and helping fellow Canadians on our own shores.

Their Stories

Team member

Denise, Veteran

Afghanistan, Somalia

Denise graduated from high school in Bouctouche, New Brunswick on June 1988 and began her military career in St-Jean-sur-Richelieu two months later. During her 28 years as a military police officer, she witnessed tragic events in Canada, in Somalia and in Afghanistan. These significant moments in her professional life convinced her to specialize in the investigation of major crimes, particularly sexual offences, in order to make a difference. She is married to Sylvain, also a military policeman, and they have two beautiful daughters, Bianka and Jessika. In addition to her courage and good physical condition, she believes that the unswerving support from her loved ones allowed her to overcome the great challenges of military life.

Charles, Veteran

WWII

Charlie joined the Air Force at the age of 18, following in the steps of his older brother Norbert. As a tail gunner in the Second World War, he was involved in 30 bombing missions over enemy territory; the final of which he was the sole survivor – becoming a prisoner of war when his plane was shot down. His brother was, unfortunately, one of the many who did not make it home after the war. Today at 95, Charlie has many stories to tell and proudly still fits into his uniform.
Team member
Team member

Frantz, Veteran

Frantz is passionate about aviation. He served proudly as a supply technician from 1986 to 2011 on a number of international missions. He is an avid participant in the Veterans Yoga Program offered by the Operational Stress Injury Clinic. This takes place at Ste. Anne’s Hospital twice a week and is supported by the Quebec Veterans Foundation.

Jonathan, Veteran

Afghanistan

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Mario, Veteran

Mario, a former infantry corporal in the Canadian Armed Forces, didn’t have an easy life.

As a child, he was often given the strap at school.  As a teenager, he lived in the streets of Toronto for a time, where he was violently beaten.  He also had dyslexia and Tourette’s syndrome, a neurological disorder that causes vocal and motor ticks.  But, none of this stopped Mario from becoming an independent and sociable man, who was deeply protective of and devoted to his family.  As the eldest son, he took wonderful care of his three younger brothers.  He, himself, has two sons and a beautiful grandson who will soon be turning two.

Mario took part in the Sentinelles of the Street, an initiative from the Old Brewery Mission, which the Quebec Veterans Foundation is proud to support.  Read more here.