Master-Corporal Christian Duchesne, a member of the 5th Field Ambulance stationed in Valcartier, passed away in Afghanistan on 22 August 2007. To honour is memory, his spouse, Gina Bourque, and his three "little princesses" Camille, 9 years old, Ariane, 5 years old, Justine, 3 years old and his parents Danielle and André Duchesne, would like to release a public statement:

Christian was on Afghan ground for a little over a month when his light armoured vehicle struck a land mine. We remember very well our phone conversations during the preceding days and weeks. Christian mentioned how much he loved his work as a medical technician. His desire was to lend a helping hand to a nation tormented by war and to support his brothers in arms.

He passionately described his expeditions in villages near Kandahar to care for the locals. Watching the afghan children, he couldn't help but think of his three "poupounes" (little darlings), which he missed dearly. Before leaving, he gave his three daughters, Moka, a kitten, which was an additional presence to fill the house. Today, the arrival of Moka takes a whole new meaning. His eldest daughter, Camille, even said that the kitten had become her "replacement daddy".    

Christian grew up in Boucherville surrounded by his family and friends. In his youth, he was a sports lover and practiced swimming, kung fu, weightlifting and excelled especially in baseball. He studied at De Mortagne high school and wished for a career as a psycho educator. At the age of 19, he preferred a military career.

Behind his shy grin and buried underneath his somewhat introverted personality, one could see a burning passion for his trade. Thirsty for adventure, travel and knowledge, he discovered a life filled with challenges. For over twelve years, he met each and every one of these challenges with his spouse Gina by his side. "Christian was a good guy, nice, mild mannered, affectionate, an exceptionally present father, capable of infinite love and who always wanted to do more". These are the best words to describe the husband, son and father that was Christian. He dreamed of becoming a medical assistant or a search and rescue technician to broaden his knowledge, but more than anything, he wanted happiness for the ones he cherished.

Despite the tremendous pain we feel, Christian remains for us a hero who made the ultimate sacrifice in a just cause: helping others. We want people to remember Christian's sacrifice. We encourage Canadians and Quebecers to continue supporting our soldiers, if only by putting a "Support our troops"
sticker on their vehicles. In our eyes, the best way to honour Christian's memory is to continue the mission with confidence and determination. Christian would have celebrated his 35th anniversary on September 24th.

"We will miss you."