Barré Trophy awarded to Private Aktas

LCol Maciej Jonasz (right) and CWO James Quesnel (left), assist the RMR Foundation president, LCol (ret’d) Colin Robinson, present Private Aktas with the RMR Foundation Bursary for the Major Paul Barre Trophy (Best Recruit)

Westmount, Quebec – 15 May 2024: The Major P.H.  Barré, ED, C ST S Trophy (TOP RECRUIT) award is given to the most deserving soldier who received the highest ranking on his/her Basic Military Qualification / Soldier Qualification course, and the Regiment’s Commanding Officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Jonasz, and the Regimental Sergeant-Major, Chief Warrant Officer Quesnel, were pleased to announce at the Regiment’s battalion review parade held on 05 May 2024, that Private Aktas had earned the Barré Trophy for the 2023-24 training year. The RMR Foundation funds this award with a Bursary to assist winners with their studies.

The trophy is so named after Major Paul Barré who joined the RMR in the early 1920’s, following the footsteps of his uncle, Hercule Barré, one of the original RMR’s (14th Battalion CEF) who came from the 65th Regiment, Carabiniers Mont-Royal. Hercule Barré was a company commander with the RMR until being wounded at the Second Battle of Ypres in April 1915.  His own story is fascinating in its own right and can be read here.

Why is Major Paul Barré considered a RMR hero?

In 1943, Major Paul Barré was second in command (DCO) of the RMR, and went on course with the Army to participate with the Allied Military Government at the end of hostilities. After cessation of hostilities on May 5th, 1945, he was posted with the Allied Military Government in Continental Europe and then attached to British Army 5th Corps Headquarters at Carintia, Austria, and it was there his duties took him to the nearby village of Viktring to attend to a large group of Yugoslav refugees where his humanitarian intervention (and disobedience to military orders) saved the lives of thousands of people.  Recognition for this effort was manifested at a reception held in the Officer’s Mess on April 4th, 1987, when Major Barré was presented with “the degree, rank, and status of a Knight Commander of the Order of the Saint-Sava for his outstanding service to the Yugoslav Royal Army in 1945”.

Major Paul Barré is a RMR hero who saved thousands of lives – recipients should be very proud to have earned an award named after him.

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