The Murals of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada: Murals
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1083 Selkirk Avenue    Location Map
  

A tribute to Seargeant Tommy Prince, Canada's most decorated aboriginal soldier.


Location: NW corner Selkirk & Prince; East Face

Occupant: private residence, Manitoba housing

District: North End

Neighbourhood: Burrows Central

Artist(s): Graffiti Art Programming/Graffiti Gallery, Nereo Eugenio (Nereo II), Fred Thomas

Year: 2011

Sponsors: Seargent Tommy Prince Memorial Fund, Graffiti Art Programming

Painters: Project Manager: David Levasseur

 

About Seargeant Tommy Prince

Thomas George Prince was born in 1915 and was a citizen of the Brokenhead First Nation located about 80 km north of Winnipeg. He was the great-great-grandson of Chief Peguis who played a prominent role in the early history of the Red River settlement. As a young man, Prince helped support his family and community as a hunter, trapper and farm labourer and earned a reputation as an honest hard worker. Prince received his formal education at the Elkhorn Industrial School where he developed a strong interest in the military through his participation in the school's Cadet Corps.

With the onset of World War II, Prince enlisted and served in the Royal Canadian Engineers, the 1st Canadian Parachute Battalion and the 1st Canadian Special Service Battalion-part of the 'Devils Brigade'. Prince's courage and disregard for his own personal safety inspired his comrades, earning him the military metal for 'exceptional bravery' and the Silver Star (United States) for 'gallantry in action'. King George VI awarded these medals to Prince at an investiture at Buckingham Palace in 1945. Prince also served with the Princess Patricia's Canadian light infantry during the Korean War, for which he received the Korean, United Nations, and the Canadian volunteer service medals.

Today, Tommy Prince has become an outstanding role model from the aboriginal community. He demonstrated that an opportunity and good training can lead to success, and he did so in an exemplary manner. He was a natural leader, an educator, an entrepreneur, lobbyist, politician, visionary and statesman. In civilian life he was a highly respected advocate of increased educational and economic opportunities for aboriginal peoples, the honouring of treaty rights, and the abolition of the repressive measures of the Indian Act. One year before Prince passed away in 1977, the Manitoba Indian Brotherhood awarded Prince with a certificate of merit "for his years of dedicated service to the Indian people of Manitoba".