Yellowknife army reservists travel 450-km to remember late member

A group of army reservists recently travelled from Yellowknife to a bay on Hardisty Lake north of Gamètì to remember a late member of their regiment who died in the Second World War. 

According to a press release from the Department of National Defence, ten members of the Yellowknife Company of the Loyal Edmonton Regiment travelled 450 kilometres by highway, ice road and snow machine to reach Bober Bay late last month.

The location was named for Walter Bober, a member of the regiment who died in Italy in 1943 at the age of 24. Members laid a wreath from the Yellowknife branch of the Royal Canadian Legion at Bober’s monument at the site.


​​“The Loyal Edmonton Regiment takes pride in remembering its past and its fallen members. These acts of remembrance rejuvenate, motivate and energize all of us, both serving and retired, to move forward with our own mission to serve our communities and our country,” Liutenant-Colonel Chris Barr, commanding officer of the regiment said in a statement.

The journey was also part of the regiment’s winter survival and mobility training. Members had to locate and traverse a trail covered with a deep layer of snow to reach the monument. 

Members break the trail to reach the monument. Photo: Loyal Edmonton Regiment.

“Entering an unbroken winding trail with three feet of untouched deep powder was challenging but it was also proved that we can go where we need to at any time of the winter,” Master Corporal Ryan Collier.

According to federal records, Bober came to Canada with his family from Poland and joined the Loyal Edmonton Regiment within weeks of the outbreak of the war in 1939. During his service, he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal. 

Bober Bay is one of 316 places in the NWT named to commemorate casualties during the Second World War, according to the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre. It was given its name in 1962 and in 2016 the Tłı̨chǫ government approved a monument to Bober at the site.