PvH Memorial stone Canadian warriors Martinikerk Sneek
Grote Kerkstraat Sneek -plan route

Against the east facade of the Martinikerk in Sneek is a memorial stone in memory of the six Canadian soldiers who died during the liberation of Sneek and its surroundings.


H.H. Pennell
W.L. Jackson
A. Cockburn
G.W. Ouderkirk
S.W. White
Fr. R. Shepherd

The soldiers were part of the regiment The Queen's Own Rifles of Canada. They died on April 15 and 16, 1945 during military action near the village of Wons, near the Afsluitdijk. The company to which the soldiers belonged helped stop German troops advancing from North Holland through the Afsluitdijk into Friesland. Thanks to the action of the Canadian fighters, street fighting in the town of Sneek was prevented. On April 17, 1945 the fallen were buried at the General Cemetery in Sneek and reburied on March 25, 1946 at the Canadian Field of Honor at Holten in Overijssel.

The memorial stone is made of French limestone. Above the names of the fallen is a maple leaf and, in abbreviation, the name the regiment of the fallen soldiers: Q(ueens) O(wn) R(ifles) O(f) C(anada). Below them are their names and the date they died. Below their names is the maxim: If I save my life, I lose it by the English poet Tennyson (1809-1892).