The Alberni Project HMCS Alberni Memorial will open to the public Friday morning at Comox Centre Mall.
Courtenay resident Lewis Bartholomew created the Alberni Project in 2000 while he was living in the USA.
“It was on a return trip from Vancouver Island on the Queen of Alberni ferry that I saw a painting of HMCS Alberni with a plaque beneath it that said 59 men had lost their lives when it was torpedoed,” he recalls.
“I went home to Seattle and started a small web-based memorial for the men. I have since emigrated to Courtenay and become a citizen, where I continue my memorial for all the men who served on HMCS Alberni and U480 with an ever-expanding website and a mobile exhibit and memorial that has appeared at various schools, malls and public events around Vancouver Island.”
This exhibit will be the largest exhibit of TAP to date (and longest it has been in one community at one time) and will be joined with items from the Battle of Atlantic Museum in Duncan. Throughout the dates of the exhibit various films and documentaries pertaining to the Battle of the Atlantic and HMCS Alberni/U480 will be screened.
There will also be a raffle for a print of the painting of HMCS Alberni that inspired the creation of the project. A fundraising gift shop will offer T-shirts, pins and other memorabilia.
TAP is a privately funded program, not affiliated with the Royal Canadian Legion or any government agency. It relies on public donations and community business grants for its educational presence in the communities.
The exhibit will be located in Unit 200 near the mall office and drugstore during regular mall hours (Mondays to Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 11 to 4). It will be at the mall from Sept. 7 to 23.
— The Alberni Project