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Cliff Chadderton

1919-2013

Cliff Chadderton

Hugh Clifford (Cliff) Chadderton was born on May 9, 1919, in Fort William (Thunder Bay), Ontario. He moved to Manitoba when he was young and later worked as a reporter for the Canadian Press when news of the Second World War broke out. In 1939, he enlisted with the Royal Winnipeg Rifles and went from a Non‑Commissioned Officer to Company Commander. A D-Day veteran, he lost part of his right leg in Belgium in 1944 during the Battle of the Scheldt.

Mr. Chadderton joined The War Amps upon returning to Canada and was mentored by former War Amps President Sidney Lambert. An active member, he held a number of positions within the Association until his appointment as Executive Secretary in 1965.

Under Mr. Chadderton’s leadership, The War Amps made the transition from a solely veteran‑oriented organization to a charitable institution that effectively represents all amputees in Canada. During this time, many of The War Amps well‑known programs were established, including CHAMP, PLAYSAFE, Matching Mothers and JUMPSTART.

Known to Canadians as “Mr. Veteran,” Mr. Chadderton led The War Amps for 44 years, from 1965‑2009, and was renowned as Canada’s most influential developer of innovative programs and services for war, civilian and child amputees, and as a tireless advocate for veterans.

Awards:

  • Companion in the Order of Canada
  • Order of Ontario
  • Inductee, Canada Veterans Hall of Valor
  • Inductee, Terry Fox Hall of Fame
  • Knight of the Order of the Legion of Honour of France
  • Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation
  • Royal Bank Award for Canadian Achievement
  • Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal

On behalf of both the National Council of Veteran Associations in Canada (NCVA) – of which The War Amps was a founding member – and the Association, he appeared before hundreds of committees established by Veterans Affairs Canada. This was in the pursuit of improvements to pension benefits and allowances on behalf of individual veterans and their families, with particular focus on the prioritization of the seriously disabled veteran.

An expert in the history and evolution of veterans legislation in Canada and throughout the world, Mr. Chadderton appeared regularly before committees of the House of Commons and Senate, presenting papers and recommendations regarding legislative amendments for the betterment of Canadian veterans.

He also made it a mission to preserve the integrity and reputation of Canadian veterans, giving a voice to their concerns over the controversial television series The Valour and the Horror and the Billy Bishop documentary The Kid Who Couldn’t Miss.

Mr. Chadderton received numerous awards, including Companion in the Order of Canada, the Order of Ontario, induction into the Canada Veterans Hall of Valour and the Terry Fox Hall of Fame, Knight in the Order of the Legion of Honour of France, the Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation, the Royal Bank Award for Canadian Achievement and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. He considered the creation of the CHAMP Program, however, to be his greatest achievement.

Mr. Chadderton passed away on November 30, 2013. His passing was marked by countless tributes across the country, including on national television networks and in newspapers. He was also honoured in the House of Commons by then‑MP Steven Fletcher and the Minister of Veterans Affairs at that time, Julian Fantino, which received a standing ovation from the House. In 2016, a lake in the Duck Mountains in southwest Manitoba, his home province, was named Chadderton Lake in his honour.

Awards:

  • Companion in the Order of Canada
  • Order of Ontario
  • Inductee, Canada Veterans Hall of Valor
  • Inductee, Terry Fox Hall of Fame
  • Knight of the Order of the Legion of Honour of France
  • Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation
  • Royal Bank Award for Canadian Achievement
  • Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal