His sacrifice will never be forgotten.
Cpl Martin Joannette July 6, 2009
Cpl Martin Joannette was killed on 6 July, 2009 in a Canadian CH-146 Griffon helicopter accident. The accident occurred at a Forward Operating Base in Tarnak Va Jaldak, Zabul Province, northeast of Kandahar City. Cpl Martin Joannette was from the 3e Bataillon, Royal 22e Régiment based at Canadian Forces Base Valcartier near Quebec City. He was serving as a member of the Joint Task Force Afghanistan Air Wing at the Kandahar Air Field.
JTF-Afg comprises about 2,830 CF members. Most of them serve at Kandahar Airfield or Camp Nathan Smith, the home of the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Kandahar City. Members of JTF-Afg also work at various military headquarters and support bases in southwest Asia, and with civilian organizations in Afghanistan.
Le cpl Martin Joannette a été tué le 6 juillet 2009 dans un accident d’hélicoptère canadien CH-146 Griffon. L’accident s’est produit à la Base d’opérations avancées de Tarnak Va Jaldak, province de Zabul, nord-est de Kandahar City. Le cpl Martin Joannette appartenait au 3e Bataillon, Royal 22e Régiment, de la Base des Forces canadiennes de Valcartier, près de Québec. Il servait à titre de membre de l’Escadre aérienne de la Force opérationnelle Interarmées en Afghanistan à l’aérodrome de Kandahar. La Force opérationnelle Interarmées en Afghanistan (FOI-Afg) est la contribution des Forces canadiennes (FC) à l’effort international en Afghanistan. Ses opérations portent sur la coopération avec les autorités afghanes pour améliorer la sécurité, la gouvernance et le développement économique en Afghanistan. La FOI-Afg est composée d’environ 2 830 membres des FC. La plupart servent à l’aérodrome de Kandahar ou au Camp Nathan Smith, le foyer de l’Équipe provinciale de reconstruction(ÉPR) dans Kandahar City. Les membres de la (FOI-Afg) travaillent aussi avec des organisations civiles en Afghanistan dans divers quartiers généraux militaires et bases de soutien dans le sud-ouest asiatique et avec des organisations civiles en Afghanistan
Beginning the Journey Home
Comrades from Joint Task Force Afghanistan carry Cpl Joannette and MCpl Audet to an awaiting CC-130 aircraft for their repatriation back to Canada. The ramp ceremony was held at Kandahar Airfield, Kandahar, Afghanistan.
The remains of Master Cpl. Pat Audet, 38, of Montreal, and Cpl. Martin Joannette, 25, of St-Calixte, Que. -- both based at Valcartier, Que. -- died Monday when their Griffon CH-146 helicopter crashed near Khandahar City.
In written statements, both soldiers' families expressed their pride and asked for privacy.
"We gave him all of our support when he volunteered for this mission. He believed deeply in what he was accomplishing," said Audet's family.
From Joannette's: "His passing will leave a huge void in our hearts."
Three other Canadians were injured in the crash -- two have returned to duty and the third is in stable condition.
Ben Walsh, whose son Master Cpl. Jeffrey Walsh was killed in Afghanistan on August 9, 2006, said the repatriation ceremony is one of the most emotional times for a fallen soldier's loved ones and expressed his condolences to the Audet and Joannette families.
"Our soldiers are Canadian protectors and whether they're protecting Canada or they're on a mission, they're still fighting for us, for Canadians," Walsh told CTV News Channel on Thursday.
After the repatriation ceremony, the bodies of the two soldiers will be driven along the portion of Highway 401 known as the "Highway of Heroes," to the coroner's office in downtown Toronto.
If you wish to leave condolences for the family of Cpl Joannette, please leave them in the comment section and I will transfer them below.
"I would like to convey my sincerest condolences to the families and friends of Master Corporal Pat Audet and Corporal Martin Joannette, who died as the result of a CH-146 Griffon helicopter crash. The accident occurred during take-off near a forward operating base in Tarnak Va Jaldak, Zabul Province, northeast of Kandahar City.I would also like to express my sympathy to the family and friends of the fallen ISAF soldier, killed in the same incident, and wish a quick recovery to the three Canadians injured.This tragedy demonstrates the great risks involved in this challenging mission.These courageous servicemen gave their lives to secure a brighter future for Afghan families and protect the values of freedom, democracy, respect for human rights and the rule of law. Canada's collaboration and determination to contribute to this UN-sanctioned, NATO-led mission will not waiver.Canada and the Canadian people will always remember this tragic occurrence and we support all those bereaved in these difficult times."
Minister of National Defence
"We were all deeply saddened to hear of the deaths of Master Cpl. Pat Audet and Cpl. Martin Joannette following a helicopter crash in Afghanistan, We grieve their loss and offer our heartfelt sympathies to their families and friends."
Prime Minister Canada
I very saddened that, once again in less than one week, two more precious Canadian lives have been lost in Afghanistan, this time in a tragic accident. Master Corporal Pat Audet and Corporal Martin Joannette were on duty in the Zabul province in southern Afghanistan when their helicopter crushed. My heart goes out to the families, friends and colleagues of the two brave Canadians. "At this difficult time, as the loved ones of these two young soldiers, and those of Master Cpl Charles-Philippe Michaud and Corporal Nicholas Bulger who lost their lives only a few days ago, I want the Canadian people to know that we in Afghanistan deeply value these sacrifices. While these soldiers have laid their lives in the service of their country, their service to cause of peace in Afghanistan will not be forgotten."
The Afghan people are grateful to the people of Canada for their support and friendship, together with other members of the international community. We depend on this friendship in order to overcome the forces of violence and terrorism within Afghanistan and beyond, and to provide a better, peaceful and prosperous future for our children.
Ambassador of Afghanistan in Canada
My husband, Jean-Daniel Lafond, and I have just learned of the tragic news of the helicopter accident that resulted in the deaths of two of our soldiers and a soldier in the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF). Three Canadian soldiers also sustained injuries.
Master Corporal Pat Audet was member of the 430 Tactical Helicopter Squadron and Corporal Martin Joanette was member of the 3rd Batallion, Royal 22e Régiment, both based at Canadian Forces Base in Valcartier. Neither the Afghan people nor our troops have enjoyed any respite from constant attacks and perilous conditions, yet in spite of it all our soldiers continue to give the best of themselves. This terrible accident now only compounds the grief that our great military family has already been feeling for several days.
On behalf of all Canadians, we would like to express our deepest sympathies to the family, friends and comrades in arms of Master Corporal Audet and Corporal Joanette. Their unwavering courage and invaluable contribution will never be forgotten. We are also sending our best wishes for a speedy recovery to our wounded soldiers. Our thoughts are with their loved ones in these difficult times. Our sympathies go out as well to the bereaved family of the ISAF soldier, for they are enduring the same sense of loss and grief.
Governor General Canada