To join Canadians in honouring Canada’s Korean War veterans, the Royal Canadian Mint has issued a special edition, 99.99% pure silver dollar commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Korean Armistice. This new collector coin was unveiled at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa by the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister for la Francophonie, and Mr. Ian E. Bennett, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint.
"During this, the Year of the Korean War Veteran, our government is pleased that the Royal Canadian Mint is honouring Canada's Korean War veterans with a new collector coin commemorating the 60th Anniversary of the Korean Armistice," said the Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister for la Francophonie. “This inspiring silver coin is an excellent tribute to the more than 26,000 Canadian men and women in uniform who came to the aid of South Koreans during the Korean War, and in particular the 516 Canadians who gave their lives in service to defend the values of peace and freedom."
“The Royal Canadian Mint has honoured Canada’s veterans through many coins in recent years and it is proud to honour them once more with a special edition silver dollar commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Korean Armistice,” said Ian E. Bennett, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint. “By preserving the central design of the original Korea Medal awarded to Commonwealth forces who served in the Korean War and donating part of the proceeds from the sale of each coin to Canadian Korean War Veteran organizations, the Mint is remembering and thanking thousands of Canadian men and women for their historic efforts and sacrifices.”
2013 is the Year of the Korean War Veteran—Canada proudly remembers the heroes of the Korean War and their brave fight to uphold freedom, democracy and the rule of law. For more information on the Korean War, visit veterans.gc.ca.
2013 Special Edition Silver Dollar: The 60th Anniversary of the Korean War Armistice
On July 27, 1953, officials signed the armistice agreement that brought combat in Korea to an end. The three-year conflict had begun just five years after the Second World War, and although much of the world was still struggling to recover from that global conflict, many nations, including Canada, came to the aid of the people of South Korea, struggling to defend their nation from a North Korean attack.
The Korean War began when North Korean armed forces invaded South Korea on June 25, 1950. The South Korean government turned to the United States which appealed to the United Nations (UN) for assistance. The UN responded by meeting to draft a Security Council resolution within 24 hours of the invasion, and issued a second one two days later to request the military support of UN member nations.
The Royal Canadian Navy was among the first in and the last out, while Canada’s soldiers fought in Korea’s mountains and valleys, supplied in part by a Royal Canadian Air Force Squadron that made transport runs between North America and Asia. By war’s end, Canada’s casualties included more than 1,200 wounded, with another 516 men making the ultimate sacrifice. By joining with its allies to uphold the principle of collective security on which the UN was founded, Canada helped to prove the effectiveness of the fledgling organization and solidify its role on the world stage.
In commemoration of the armistice which ended combat on the Korean Peninsula 60 years ago, the Royal Canadian Mint has crafted a 99.99% pure silver dollar featuring an adaptation of the reverse of the original Korea Medal awarded to all Commonwealth forces who served in the war.
In adapting the Korea Medal design for this coin, Royal Canadian Mint engravers faithfully preserved Edward Carter Preston’s original depiction of Hercules, the idealized warrior from Greek mythology, slaying the indomitable hydra-headed monster as an allegory for the perilous struggles of war, and a tribute to those who freely go to battle. In addition, the original engraving of “KOREA” has been expanded to include “CORÉE”, to reflect Canada’s official bilingualism.
Along with the Mary Gillick effigy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the word “CANADA” appeared on the Korea Medal’s obverse in order to distinguish medals awarded to Canadian military personnel. This same effigy, used on Canadian circulation coinage 60 years ago, returns to the obverse of this 2013-dated fine silver coin.
Limited to a mintage of 10,000 examples world-wide, this silver coin is available for $69.95 CDN. The Royal Canadian Mint will donate $10.00 from the sale of each coin to Canadian Korean War Veteran organizations.