Namao School one location for Fallen Heroes documentary

by Lucie Roy
Namao School was one of several locations chosen for Fallen Heroes: The Journey Home, a documentary by Combined Forces Productions that covers the repatriation of Canadian soldiers and citizens welcoming home the fallen during Canadian military operations in Afghanistan and friendly fire incident at Kandahar Airfield in April 2002.

The filming of the documentary in Sturgeon County and Edmonton on Sunday 25 July saw two people travel from Saskatchewan to be in the movie. Saskatchewan Legion Saskatchewan District 3 Zone 3 Deputy Commander Shelley McMurphy and her mother Jenny Nichol came from Turletford to be a part of it.

Veteran motorcycle groups were in attendance. From the Edmonton crew was Toddy Hussey and Mike Ryann and Paul Gallant UN/NATO vets, Darren Longstaff, and Bob Peterson.

Participants included Redwater Councillor Rob Olsen who was the Bus Captain, Sturgeon County Peace Officers and Fire Department, RCMP, ETS- Edmonton Transit System and many more.

Sturgeon Public School Communications Advisor Karen Meurer said, “We have kids from military families in all of our Sturgeon Public Schools, from Kindergarten to Grade 12. When the production company asked to use Namao School as production headquarters and in a couple of shots in the documentary, we immediately said yes. It was our way of giving back to the military families within our Sturgeon Public Schools family.”

Meuer said the Division was excited the documentary will be shown in social studies classes in schools across Canada.

“[We] feel privileged to have had a small part in teaching kids about our Canadian Military History,” she said.

The Namao School stepped up when asked. Due to COVID restrictions, production could not film at CFB Edmonton.

Sturgeon Public School Director of Facilities Denis Henderson portrayed Lorne Ford, the wounded soldier who attended the funeral of the first Canadians killed.

The filming of the six location shots started off at the base at Valour and Rhine to Range Rd 244 with volunteers lined up on both sides of the road.

Many, like Garth and Angela Webb of Gibbons and Glenn Walmsley of St Albert, took the time to make signs and grab Canadian flags for the movie showing them lined up on the road.

The second shot was the recreation of the motorcade on the Hwy 28 overpass, and the third was the Highway Procession on Anthony Henday 97-66 St.

Parts of Anthony Henday Drive was a substitute for Ontario’s Highway of Heroes, the section of the Hwy 401 from Canadian Forces Base Trenton to Toronto that was a sad mark of a soldiers’ final journey.

The 4 and 5 shots covered entering the ceremony (Namao School), and the final shot was outside the Skyreach Centre.

Hwy 28 overpass with the recreation of the motorcade.
Honorary Consulate of Lebanon in Edmonton, Hussein Rahal with a group.
Namao School was used to recreate the scene at the Skyreach Centre.
Publisher’s Note: Morinville Online – MorinvilleNews.com is closed this week for the first of two weeks’ summer vacation. This article and others published this week were pre-scheduled prior to our close down. We will resume news coverage on Aug. 3.

Publisher’s Note 2: This article was updated at 3:53 p.m. July 28 to remove some information that was in need of further clarification.

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