Marc Leger

Marc Leger

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Lancaster, Ontario, CAN
Army, SGT, Third Battalion of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (3PPCLI)
04/18/2002  Afghanistan, Kandahar

Sergeant Marc Leger died at the hands of an errant bomb unleashed by a ‘gung ho’ American National Guard pilot who thought he was under attack while patrolling in Afghanistan during the war there. It is not, however, Leger’s death in Afghanistan that puts him on the list. During an earlier time in Bosnia, Sergeant Marc Leger became known as ‘King Marco.’ During his time in Bosnia, Leger was exposed to the horrors of ‘ethnic cleansing.’ In the Livno Valley, Bosnia, ‘King Marco’ is hailed as a hero. While on his peacekeeping [a misnomer] tour of duty, Leger was charged with disarming potential insurgents and providing security for all ethnic groups. Additionally, he was given the responsibility of assisting returning Serb refugees as they settled back into their communities. Most of the farmhouses had been destroyed by a rampaging Croat army hell bent to ethnically cleanse the area of all Serbs. The Croats killed or drove off livestock, poisoned wells, destroyed Serb Orthodox churches and laid land mines. One Serb family that managed to survive by fleeing, returned to their homeland only to face a place of destruction. With their few possessions, the family of Miorad Kozomara began to rebuild their home; all that remained from before was their house with its partial roof but little else; no doors, no windows, no livestock, and no seed to plant a crop. One day, a jeep with some Canadian soldiers arrived and told the Kozomara family that they were there to help. Sergeant Marc Leger was their leader.

When he saw the desperate state that faced the Serb family, Canadian Leger “badgered the local United Nations High Commission of Refugees’ representative and any aid agency that drove through the area.” For six months, Leger hounded the UN representative and other officers for resources. [Canwest news service]

“He took leftover and thrown-away building supplies and distributed them while on patrol. He snuck food from the camp kitchen and spirited off the camp water truck when no one was looking.” [ibid.]

Leger managed to pry money from the Canadian International Development Agency to re-roof 28 local houses. One re-roofed house is emblazoned with the Canadian Maple Leaf and the CIDA logo. [ibid.]

Recently, when the Serbs in the Livno Valley learned of Sergeant Marc Leger’s death, they mourned. One said, “We never could have returned to this valley without the help of that big Canadian soldier.” [ibid.]

The Kozomara family learned of King Marc’s death through one of their sons who lives in Canada. The news of Sergeant Leger’s death shattered Mrs. Kozomara. “I got very nervous and started crying as if my son had died,” she said. [ibid.]

Sergeant Leger’s widow, Marley Leger, will take the proceeds of the ‘Sergeant Marc Leger Memorial Fund’ to local officials so that a gutted schoolhouse can be rebuilt as a community centre and medical clinic. A plaque will be attached to the building; the plaque dedicates the building to Sergeant Marc Leger’s memory. ‘King Marc’s’ memory lives on.

Of the aforementioned Canadian heroes, Sergeant Marc Leger is the one that stands out. His heroism truly qualifies as “a person who does great and brave deeds and is admired for them”

Marc’s portrait is also on Poster 7 and Poster 8

Responses

3 Responses to “Marc Leger”
  1. Anna Lusk says:

    April 18, 2011

    A week ago this past Saturday I was at Amberway Park in Stittsville, Ontario with my 5 year old grandson. We were investigating in the park when we came across a plaque in the grass under a tree. It was put there in honour of Marc’s grieve stricken parents. I told my grandson the story about how Marc had gone to serve his country as a soldier and unfortunately was killed while doing his job. I then yesterday read the article in the Sun “A painful aniversary” So sad. Amberway resident, Anna Lusk

  2. Ryan Schmitz says:

    Remembering Marc tonight, blessed to have known him

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  1. The Royal Canadian Legion, Dominion Command, recently launched a new campaign, one to welcome home and honour our troops from Afghanistan. These Veterans are recognized as having carried out their duty and responsibilities with much pride and professionalism.

    The Stittsville Legion (branch 618) hosted a dinner on Friday September 30th honouring Afghanistan veterans and their families. 2870 RCD RCACC was asked to assist. Cadets from 706 Snowy Owl RCACS and HMCS Lanark also assisted. Sergeant Martin helped out in the kitchen, while Warrant Officers Noonan and Sample acted as servers. The event was highly successful.

    The legion also set a table in honour of Sergeant Marc Daniel Léger of Lancaster Ontario, who was lost at Tarnak Farm in Afghanistan due to a tragic friendly fire incident on April 17, 2002. Sgt. Léger served in the Army, in the Third Battalion of Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, and is honoured as a hero for his work done in Bosnia during an earlier time (read more). His parents, Richard and Claire Léger, reside in Stittsville.



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