Nova Scotia

Glace Bay tribute to WW I hero restored after accident

A tribute to a fallen World War One solider in Glace Bay, N.S. has been restored to its original condition after being smashed into pieces in December.

Monument in honour of John Bernard Croak was destroyed in a December car accident

A monument in honour of John Bernard Croak before and after its restoration. (CBC)

A tribute to a fallen World War One soldier in Glace Bay, N.S. has been restored to its original condition after being smashed into pieces in December.

The monument in honour of John Bernard Croak was destroyed in December when it was hit by a car.

Sunday, members of the community went to the site to celebrate the restoration.

"It's something we took a little extra pride in for sure because we know the history involved with it and we wanted to bring it back," said Leo Steele who speaks for the company that rebuilt the monument. "Hopefully it's there for many years to come now."

John Bernard Croak was a hero in the war. Born in Little Bay, Newfoundland, his family moved to Glace Bay when he was just four years old.

Croak was a coal miner who enlisted in the army in 1915. He was killed in action while leading a charge against an enemy machine gun placement in France just three years later.

He was later awarded the Victoria Cross for bravery and was buried in France. A monument was built in the cemetery in Glace Bay.

"He gave the ultimate sacrifice," said Sheldon MacNeil, President of the John Bernard Croak Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion.

MacNeil was overwhelmed when he saw the restored monument. He said it's important to remember Croak's sacrifice.

"Mr. Croak gave up his life for us, and this is the very least we can do. I'm just so happy to see it in the condition it's in." 

The cost of the restoration was covered by insurance. The work was completed by John D Steele's & Sons Monument Works, the same company that built the original monument.

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