The Give | Comfort and care for our veterans

Comfort and care for our veterans

Donald McBrien with his daughters Judy Farquharson, at left, and Julie McBrien


“Dad always said he was one of the lucky ones,” recalls Judy Farquharson. “He didn't have to serve overseas - World War 2 ended while he was waiting to be deployed.”

Judy’s father, Donald McBrien, turned 95 this year. In his declining health, Judy and her sister, Julie, say they are thankful to have him at the Ridgewood Veterans Wing owing to his service in the Canadian Army.

“He was able to do some of his training in accounting when he was in the military,” says Ms. Farquharson, “and it served him well.”

For most of his career, Mr. McBrien worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs Canada. There, he was lucky enough to meet the love of his life, Elsie Newcombe, an RNA at the Ridgewood Veterans Wing.

“They married in 1970 and later had my sister and I,” says Ms. Farquharson. “So I guess we owe part of our existence to the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Ridgewood Veterans Wing.”

It was this personal connection that inspired the sisters to support Field of Flags, an annual fundraiser for the Veterans Wing.

The event raises money for the Ridgewood Veterans Comfort Fund, which enhances and supports the day-to-day lives of those who have served by covering purchases that brighten a veteran’s day. This includes recreation activities, medical equipment and comfort items specific to a veteran’s needs.

Dad was blessed with good health and financial security following his service and career. We are happy for him to be able to stay at Ridgewood and wanted to be able to provide some financial support

- Judy Farquharson, Field of Flags supporter and daughter of Donald McBrien, RVW resident

The residents of the Ridgewood Veterans Wing, along with others in care homes, have suffered since COVID, with very little contact with the outside world and only occasional visitors.

“This is to give them something special,” Ms. Farquharson says, “to make their home at Ridgewood more comfortable.”

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