Author Topic: ONE VETERAN'S VOICE - A VETERAN AND HIS VOICE  (Read 1866 times)

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One Veteran One Standard

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« on: August 22, 2015, 02:21:50 PM »

My name is Wolf William ("Bill") Solkin, and  I live (in my special  power-operated bed and wheelchair) at Ste. Anne's (Veterans)Hospital in Quebec,  among some three hundred (+)  fellow-Veterans of WW II, and  the Korean 'conflict'.

I served, until recently as  Editor-in-Chief of a potent and  popular in-house newsletter, "The Veterans' Voice", ( which I created and crafted)crafted), and also as a Director of the  Ste. Anne's   Residents'/Patients' Committee.  I felt compelled to resign  from both positions, after being subjected to totally unwarranted and unacceptable restrictions , restraints and outright censorship by the senior Administration of Ste. Anne's Hospital, and re which actions the officers of The Residents' Committee were actively instigative and insistent. .  My actions were necessitated by my unwillingness to compromise my principles and demean my integrity, or  to surrender my inherent rights of freedom of speech and of expression, for which so many  Canadians had  fought so fiercely and sacrificed so significantly.

At the age of 92, I may have lost all my teeth, but I still have all my marbles, and I am prepared to employ the latter on behalf of advancing  the crucial cause of Canada's Veterans at all times, 24/7/365. My pertinent  credentials for that dedication and commitment are as follows:

MILITARY...enlisted at age of 19, while still at University; .originally certified as Artillery Officer (Field and  Anti-tank); injured while on exercises in England;following  return to full fitness status,  voluntarily transferred to Infantry, and served with the Algonquin Regiment (IV Div.) as Lieutenant, in command of a Combat Platoon, primarily in Holland and Germany, until V-E Day and beyond.
While still in Germany, was seconded to Dep't. of Veterans Affairs and trained as Rehabilitation Officer, to advise and assist returning soldiers through the discharge process back into civilian life, until 'Taken Off Strength' in Jan./46. These experiences lay the foundation for my lifetime empathy and identification with my Canadian comrades-in-arms. To this very day, I am an active member of The Algonquin Regiment Veterans Association and The Jewish War Veterans Association of Canada.

EDUCATION...Bachelor of Arts (Sociology), McGill University;  Master of Social Work (Community Organization), University of Toronto.

PRIOR OCCUPATION(s)...after a few years, with a growing family to support, switched  from Social Work to housing construction and real estate development in Montreal and France, p plus  management  of luxury resort hotel/condos in Palm Beach, Florida, and commercial hotels in New York City.

AIMS and OBJECTIVES...It is my avowed purpose to dedicate all of my still ample energies and reasonably  adequate abilities to the cause of upgrading and safeguarding the the hard-earned rights of Canada's military Veterans , and to ensure them of continued care, full respect, and maximumdegree of dignity in their more vulnerable last phase of life. They once fought to protect our country  against the aggression of its sworn is now that  same country's turn to protect them against their inevitable foes, old age and its constant companion, ill health .

WAYS and MEANS...I am now fortuitously associated with that effectively activist body, Canadian Veterans Advocacy, with its far-reaching inroads into multiple social media networks as a ready-made platform for my polemics, in the form of the continuing columns I have been invited to contribute, reflecting on the cares and concerns of we few vestigial Veterans whose extended existence still warrants fulfilment of Ottawa's obligations. As well, I am benefited by having amicable and reciprocally respectful relationships with a  few  influential Federal Government officials who are not unwilling to hear (and, hopefully, heed) my not infrequent censorious comments on matters of mutual interest.

To paraphrase what one of my associates at Canadian Veterans Advocacy once so succinctly said, "They served then; .they deserve now"!  It is to give long life and meritorious meaning to those words and all they imply, that I have devoted my heart and mind (albeit the body is not of much use), in the good and productive years still ahead.

That is who I am...and that is what I do.

WOLF William Solkin
Ste. Anne's Hospital
Ste. Anne de Bellevue, Quebec