My aunt had an old oval picture frame that she wanted to re-purpose. When she took the picture out, she found a picture of her grandfather that had been hidden beneath it. He was in a military uniform. Not knowing what service her grandfather had been in, she took the picture to the Glenbow Museum to see if they could identify the uniform. After a few weeks, they responded to her. Incredibly, the uniform was for the personal bodyguard of Nicolas II, the Czar of Russia. My aunt started asking her older relatives if they knew anything about his role; the common response was “we don’t talk about it”. Apparently, right after the assassination of Nicolas II, the family fled Russia and hid any association to their past. For safety reasons, the generations didn’t talk about it.

I am sure there are thousands of stories with thousands of reasons why people left their homeland to come to Canada. I am just grateful this story eventually came out so the history was not totally lost. Even more so, I am grateful they had such a wonderful country to seek a safe way of life.

Garth J – Triovest

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