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History

The Army, Navy & Air Force Veterans in Canada is Canada’s oldest veterans’ association. Although the precise start-date is obscured by time, it is known that a charter was given in 1840 by Queen Victoria to create a unit in Montreal. It is believed that units existed well before that time, perhaps as early as the Conquest of New France in the seventeen hundreds.

The Association derives its name from those remnants of British and French colonial regiments which were left in Canada when their regiments returned to Britain or France following their tours of duty protecting the colonies. These men banded together to exchange information on service benefits available to them and to fraternize. They called themselves “The Army Veterans in Canada” so that when they were in Britain they could denote their location as opposed to the Army Veterans in Australia or South-Africa. The reference to Canada became an integral part of the Association’s title, as incorporated by the Government of Canada in 1917.

Following the War of 1812 sailors from the British Navy which patrolled the Great Lakes and the eastern seaboard, who remained in Canada, joined the Army Veterans in Canada and the title was changed to “The Army and Navy Veterans in Canada”.

During and following the Second World War, members of the Air Force were welcomed as members and the official title the “The Army, Navy & Air Force Veterans in Canada” was enacted, by an amendment to our Act of Incorporation, by Parliament in 1946. The Association uses the short form ANAVETS to identify itself.

Our mission is to support veterans, including the modern veteran and to facilitate remembrance of our fallen and their sacrifices.

In 2011 ANAVETS celebrated its 171st Anniversay