Lee Harrison to represent The Royal Canadian Legion on the 2019 Nijmegen March

Jun 21, 2019
The Royal Canadian Legion will be represented at this year’s Nijmegen March by Lee Harrison, member of Peterborough Legion Branch 52. We asked him about what this opportunity means to him, how he's training for the March, and why he became a Legion member.

 

Lee Harrison poses while on tour in Afghanistan TF 3-08

The Royal Canadian Legion will be represented at this year’s Nijmegen March by Lee Harrison, member of Peterborough Legion Branch 52. He is now training for the four day march in the Netherlands, joining tens of thousands of participants from all over the world, walking more than 40 km a day.

A Canadian Forces Veteran of Bosnia and Afghanistan and a current Fire Fighter in Peterborough, Lee was chosen from among dozens of applications across the country.

“We look for someone who is physically active and who will proudly represent the Legion,” says Dominion President Tom Irvine. “Lee is an exemplary Legion member and community member, we are proud that he will represent us. We wish him well on this adventure of a lifetime.”

We talked to Lee about how he is preparing for the Nijmegen March and what this opportunity means to him.

How did you feel when you learned you had been accepted?

I felt extremely honoured and proud to have the opportunity to represent the Legion and Veterans of Canada on this International March.

I’ve known about the Nijmegen March the entire time I was in the Canadian Forces. It is something that I have always wanted to do. I trained for it every year even though I wasn’t able to attend. It’s on my bucket list and I am so excited and honoured to be able to represent Canada, the Legion and Veterans this year!

How are you training for the four day March?

I keep an active lifestyle and participate in races every year like Canada Army Run. For the Nijmegen March, we start training with a low millage and we increase it every day. Right now I did two 40k marches two days in a row and I am feeling great!

 What are you looking forward to the most?

I’m looking forward to the entire experience. I loved my time in the Canadian Forces and am looking forward to representing Veterans, Canada and The Royal Canadian Legion.

My motivation to complete the Nijmegen March goes back to honouring Canadians like my great uncle who served in the Second World War. He served in Holland so the opportunity to potentially walk in his footsteps would be exceptional.

Why did you become a Legion Member?

My great uncle was a Legion member and a Second World War and Korean Veteran who took me to the Legion for visits as a kid. I was also in the Army Cadets, so I had a lot of exposure to the Legion as a young person. I saw what they did for Veterans and military members as a Firefighter in Peterborough as well, and I wanted to be part of it. I wanted to do my part in this organization that does a great job.

How has your experience as a Legion Member been so far? And what do you like best?

It’s been excellent! I’ve had a lot of exposure to Branch 52 in Peterborough over the years and I’ve seen how they are helping Veterans and the community.

Lee Harrison (left) and friend Scott Moody training for the Nijmegen March in July.

Lee Harrison (left) and friend Scott Moody training for the Nijmegen March in July.

The Canadian Armed Forces traditionally invites a Legion member to join its team each year, in recognition of the Legion’s sponsorship of the team’s visit to Vimy Ridge while in Europe for the March.

Tens of thousands military members and civilians combined take part in the Nijmegen March every year and thousands of spectators cheer them on. To learn more, please visit: https://www.4daagse.nl/en/