Today, Parks Canada in collaboration with the Canadian Armed Forces and the Canadian War Museum paid tribute to Staff Sergeant Harry Lovelace of the Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers as a Hometown Hero. The commemorative ceremony was held at the Canadian War Museum in the presence of dignitaries and some members of the Lovelace family while other family members in New Brunswick were able to attend virtually.
Son of a blacksmith from the village of Rolling Dam in Southern New Brunswick, Harry Lovelace was already an accomplished auto mechanic in nearby St. Stephen when war broke out in 1939. In 1941, Lovelace wanted to contribute to the war effort and enlisted in the Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (RCEME) at the age of 35.
During the Battle of Normandy, Lovelace bravely led a team to repair Allied tanks disabled in the field and return them to action. Known as a mechanical genius, Lovelace invented many devices that improved the performance of combat vehicles while reducing service times. For his efforts, Lovelace was awarded the British Empire Medal by King George VI in 1945.
Staff Sergeant Harry Lovelace joins a growing list of Canadians who have been recognized for their achievements during the First and Second World Wars. Launched by Parks Canada in 2015 as a community-based initiative, Hometown Heroes honours and tells the stories of ordinary citizens, both military and civilian, who contributed to Allied efforts during the two World Wars.
To date, more than 140 Canadians from across the country have been recognized through interpretive panels displayed on the Parks Canada website, and at national historic sites in their hometown. By sharing these exemplary stories with Canadians, we express gratitude for their service and sacrifices.