25-cent coin features new poppy design while $2 coin honours the 100th anniversary of Lt. Col. John McCrae’s writing of “In Flanders Fields”
One hundred years after Canadian Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae penned “In Flanders Fields” on the battlefield of Ypres, Belgium, the Royal Canadian Mint has issued a $2 circulation coin commemorating his iconic poem of remembrance, as well as a 25-cent circulation coin featuring a life-like poppy design. These coins were unveiled at a special ceremony held today at McCrae House.
“The Mint has a proud history of crafting coins which honour the many Canadians who have risked or sacrificed their lives in defending our freedoms and values,” said Sandra Hanington, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint. “As Canadians across the country are once more preparing to honour our veterans at upcoming Remembrance Day ceremonies, the Mint is pleased to join them in remembrance through new circulation coins.”
The reverse side of the $2 coin, designed by Canadian Artist Glen Loates, features an image of Lt.-Col. McCrae writing In Flanders Fields on the battlefield surrounded by crosses and poppies, with the larks described in his poem flying overhead. At the bottom of the outer ring, the words “REMEMBER” and “SOUVENIR” flank each side of the 2015 year of issue. A total of five million $2 circulation coins celebrating the 100th anniversary of the writing of “In Flanders Fields” have been produced.
Designed by artist Tony Bianco, the reverse of the 25-cent coin depicts a large poppy in the foreground surrounded by smaller poppies in the background. This natural-looking illustration is presented in two versions: a coloured poppy which appears on 6.25 million coins and an uncoloured version of the poppy, which graces 6.25 million non-coloured poppy coins. The legend “REMEMBER-SOUVENIR” is also engraved in a banner at the bottom of the coin. A total of 12.5 million 25-cent poppy coins will circulate across Canada.
“One hundred years after they were penned on the battlefield, the moving words of In Flanders Fields continue to remind us that the peace and freedom we enjoy every day as Canadians is the ultimate gift of our veterans,” said Royal Canadian Legion Dominion President Tom Eagles. “By collecting the circulation coins issued by the Mint today, Canadians will have a permanent way to remember the sacrifices of all our veterans, as well as learn more about Lt. Col. John McCrae’s historic contribution to honouring their memory.”
Canadians can look for these coins in their change, attend coin exchanges at special events in select locations across Canada and at the Mint’s Ottawa, Winnipeg and Vancouver boutiques, or obtain limited quantities through an online coin exchange at www.mint.ca/remembrance (limited to Canada only).
While supplies last, 10,000 collector cards, filled with one of each coin, can also be ordered online at the face value cost of $2.50 (limit of one card per household).
The Mint also issued a number of collector coins celebrating the 100th anniversary of the writing of “In Flanders Fields” in 2015, including a limited-edition proof silver dollar and fine silver coins in ¼ oz., 1 oz., 5 oz. and 10 oz. sizes. More information on this family of products can be found at www.mint.ca.