Burnbrae Gardens resident Phillip Ash recognized for distinguished military career

Burnbrae Gardens resident Phillip Ash (right) is seen here with his longtime friend, Joe Aitchison. Phillip was one of two recipients of Burnbrae Gardens’ 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award.

Longtime friend and grandson on-hand to present Phillip with his Lifetime Achievement Award

CAMPBELLFORD, Ont. – Burnbrae Gardens resident Phillip Ash was presented with the Campbellford long-term care home’s Lifetime Achievement Award for his military service and dedication to Canadian soldiers.

Phillip Ash watches his grandson, Rhys Robb, give a presentation on Phillip’s military career, during Burnbrae Gardens’ Aug. 29 awards ceremony.

During an Aug. 29 ceremony at Burnbrae Gardens, a fellow soldier and longtime friend of Phillip’s, Joe Aitchison, along with the Phillip’s grandson, Rhys Robb, presented the award to the 91-year-old veteran.

Phillip, dressed in his military uniform adorned with his numerous medals, sat proudly as his many achievements were highlighted.

Phillip was born in Madoc, Ont., one of 10 children in his family. Phillip’s 25-year army career began in 1945, at the tail-end of the Second World War.

In 1946, Phillip enrolled at Queen’s University, where he studied languages. After graduation, he trained to be an officer in the army. In 1949, he went to Petawawa as a training officer. From there, Phillip volunteered as a full-time officer in the Korean War, serving many posts.

After his service in Korea, Phillip went back to Petawawa and trained as a parachutist. He was eventually stationed at a base in Soest, West Germany, during the post-war period. Phillip would later go on to serve another peacekeeping mission in West Germany as well as in Vietnam.

After his distinguished military career, Phillip went to work for Veterans Affairs Canada for 17 years. Phillip also became a high-ranking member of the Korea Veterans Association of Canada (KVA).

During his tenure with the KVA, Phillip helped establish the Korean War Memorial Wall at Meadowvale Cemetery in Brampton.

“My grandfather had served for quite a long time with the RCR (Royal Canadian Regiment), helping soldiers after and during wars,” Rhys said, during his presentation. “He was able to travel to 18 different countries in his working career. (Burnbrae Gardens) has nominated Phillip for all of his commitment, duties and bravery within the military.”

Like his grandfather, Rhys is also involved with the military, serving in the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion of the Royal Canadian Army Cadet Corps.

Following the ceremony, Phillip expressed his gratitude to Burnbrae Gardens.

“I am very honoured to be here to receive this award,” he said.

Lifetime Achievement Awards are presented to people living in OMNI Health Care long-term care homes who have demonstrated commitment to other residents, their home and country.

Determining this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award recipient at Burnbrae Gardens was so challenging the team decided to present the award to two residents, Phillip Ash and Julie Hallett.

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