Me posing with the profile for Sgt. Norman Quick along Remembrance Row.

Ottawa Race Day – Vimy Challenge

Today was race day in Ottawa for the Canada Army Run;

In what turned out to be a beautiful day, over 20,000 converged on Laurier and Elgin Streets in Ottawa to participate in this unique military event.

“More than anything, though, Canada Army Run, is about Canadians and the Canadian Armed Forces – Air Force, Army, and Navy – joining together in the spirit of camaraderie and community. It’s a chance for the troops to extend the military esprit de corps to Canadians and to thank them for their support. And, it’s an opportunity for Canadians to say thanks to the men and women who serve them in so many ways at home and abroad.”

Unique for this year was the Vimy Challengewhere participants run, walk or roll officially in BOTH the 5K, presented by General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada, and 10K events.” Vimy Challenge “was added to the 2017 Canada Army Run line-up to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge (First World War).” Also new this year was the introduction of Remembrance Row; “a section along the course showcasing signs of veterans who have passed away. These veterans are connected to you the participants, and we are calling on you for submissions.”

My submission for Remembrance Row was both Norman Quick, and Charles Ross, both of the Canadian Army Film & Photo Unit. Alas, only one of the profiles was allowed per participant and Norman Quick was selected to be featured along the course on race day.

The Vimy Challenge mandated that participants had to finish the first leg (5K) before the start of the second leg (10K), 45 minutes later. I knew that I could meet the requirement of running a 5K in under 45 minutes (from previous 5K Army Runs), but I forgot to take into account that with so many participants crowded at the start line, it might take me 10 minutes just to cross the start line!

Ultimately, I was able to ‘position’ myself close to the start line and was off without a problem. My next challenge was to locate Norman Quicks profile which I knew was featured somewhere along the race route. I spotted Norman Quicks profile along the Colonel By parkway, and decided I would grab some pictures during the second leg of the Challenge, the 10K. I wanted to keep going, feeling somewhat pressured to finish the 5K with time to regroup before the 10K.

In the end, it all worked out fine and I made the start of the 10K without a problem. When I happened upon Norms’ profile again, I stopped and struggled a bit to take a selfie of me and Norms’ profile. Fortunately, one of the participants made the effort to stop and took a few pictures of me posing with Norms profile. Big thank you to Mandy Wood for helping me out – it meant a lot to me!!


After the race I stopped by the Cenotaph to acknowledge the men and women who sacrificed their lives in service to Canada.

-Lest We Forget-


1 Comment

  1. It is with saddened heart that I learned of the passing of Fred Richard Quick on Thursday, September 21, 2017 at the age of 67 (son of Dora Quick and the late Norman Quick). Memorial Service will be held at CAPITAL FUNERAL HOME & CEMETERY 3700 Prince of Wales Drive 613-692-1211 on Tuesday, September 26 at 11:00 a.m., with the family receiving friends one hour prior to the service.

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About me

Dale Gervais has been actively researching and documenting the history of the Canadian Film & Photo Unit since 2006. Dale recently retired in September, 2018, after over 36 years with Library & Archives Canada. Dale now works as an independent researcher, with experience in audio visual holdings, video production and more recently doing Archival textual document searches, and photographic scanning.


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