“This was a commission I was thrilled to win, for several reasons. First, the subject was very close to my heart – I have read many books on the First World War and spent hours in London’s Imperial War Museum imagining the horror of it, as well as listening to my grandfather’s memories of his years in the trenches. Secondly, I had wanted to do a Chemainus mural ever since I discovered the town when I arrived from England – and here was one I could really get my teeth into!
“Painting it was exhausting but fun, being alternately encouraged and delayed by the huge crowds that came by every day with their cameras and questions.
“The painting features Lieutenant General Arthur Currie, commander at Vimy Ridge, as well as a portrait of Edmund J. Palmer, the local postmaster and mill manager, in addition to figures that illustrate the ordinary men and women who suffered through those years at home and on the front, and linked by the mail,” recalls David Goatley.