Globe and Mail Update Last updated on Tuesday, Jun. 30, 2009 09:57PM EDT
He grew up in awe of his grandfather, who lied about his age to enlist in the Canadian Forces at 17 and fight in the First World War.
Mr. Reed dabbled in hockey before settling into life as a businessman in Toronto, but his reverence for Canadian soldiers never faded.
The itch he had to honour the sacrifices of Canadian Forces manifested itself in Project Hero: a new scholarship program that covers tuition for four years and residence fees for one year for the children of fallen soldiers.
The first scholarships will be offered to students who enroll this September at the University of Ottawa, University of Windsor, Memorial University and University of Calgary.
In December, Mr. Reed was made honorary lieutenant colonel of an army reserve unit in southwestern Ontario – the 31 Service Brigade. He soon became familiar with the struggles of the families that soldiers leave behind from conversations with army wives, husbands and children.
“We can add something consistent to their lives, hopefully, when there are so many unknowns as they go through these grieving processes,” he said in an interview yesterday.
Mr. Reed, who founded several companies in Ontario, and is vice-chairman of Grey Horse Corp., a corporate trust firm, worked with retired general Rick Hillier to launch the scholarship program at Memorial University in Newfoundland and Labrador, where Mr. Hillier is chancellor.
From there, Mr. Reed brought the idea to Allan Rock, president of the University of Ottawa. The University of Windsor then came on board, and on Tuesday, the University of Calgary followed.
“We know that our men and women go over and serve our country, and if they are unfortunately killed in action, their families have to suffer that incredible loss,” said Ann Tierney, vice-provost (students) at the University of Calgary. “Any obstacles that they might face financially we want to ease that by providing them with this scholarship.”
Mr. Reed said he knows of about 30 to 40 children of fallen soldiers in Canada ranging from babies to teenagers. He said a handful of them would be eligible for the scholarship this fall.Each university will cover the cost of undergraduate tuition and first-year residence fees for eligible students, and the number of scholarships awarded each year will depend on how many students qualify. Students must be 26 or under and Canadian citizens or permanent residents to apply.
Mr. Reed said he wants to bring the program to all Canadian universities.
“This is the least I can do and we can do as people who are proud to be Canadian,” he said. “We're the people who get to live under a blanket of freedom that the military lays out for us every day.”
Another politically correct idea that will win humongous amounts of money
rapidly and be applauded by those with a patriotic sense of duty.
With the greatest respect to those who gave their lives while serving in the Canadian Forces, these "children" probably did have a loving deserving father and benefited from a functional family for at least some of their lives.
Every child is special, and unfortunately, Canada does not really give a rat's excrement about fundamental, overall children's rights.
Lets deal with realities and not life view through the image projected by our government's propaganda, Canada has another side to it's reputation, and that's one of national child abuse, the worst kind of child abuse, that is known as more harmful to children than childhood sexual abuse, its called "parental alienation" and its official government policy, its law made politicians, and politically correct judges who make "judge made law" that defies many of the laws of Canada not to mention fundamental obvious rights and wrongs.
Children deserve to know WHO their father is, right now, at least 25% to 33% of all Canadian children have a father named on their birth certificate who is not their father, thats right, 25% of those children who thought "their father" who died in the Canadian Defense Forces, are fed wrong information by their mothers who probably know who the father really is but rarely does the child ever find out.
The only solution is that every Canadian Birth require DNA confirmation of parentage of the mother and father, it would be an advanced form of the wrist identifying tags you see at hospitals to prevent an accident of giving the wrong baby to the wrong mother.
Another solution that will help every Canadian child is a Legal Presumption of Equal Parenting, something that is opposed by the Feminist Politically Appointed Judiciary of Canada.