90 years ago today, on another Easter Monday, Canadian troops climbed from their trenches and began an assault on a ridge both the British and French had failed to take and hold previously. Their capture Vimy ridge has become part of our national mythology, a story of how 4 divisions of Canadians, fighting together for the first time, took what our founding nations could not. Though our men fought bloodier battles, and more significant battles (Vimy was part of a grand plan of attack, and it was the plan's sole success (it was also only considered a diversion- no-one thought they could do it.)) it was Vimy that became the battle that captured the imagination and patriotism of Canada.
My grandfather was among them. As far as I can tell, it was his first time going over the top. He never spoke of the war after, not even of how he earned his decorations. I never met the man, but I am proud to call such a man my grandfather.