Mr. Speaker, I recently met with a special family in my riding. The Spence family has a long, proud tradition of military service going back several generations. The father, Rick Spence, is a 27 year veteran who serves in our Canadian air force.
His son, Private Michael Spence, is a member of the 1st Battalion of the Royal Canadian Regiment. Tragically, he was critically wounded serving on operations in Afghanistan. After meeting with his parents, Rick and Christina, I am extremely pleased to report that Michael is in good spirits and responding well to treatment. In fact, he is on the Hill today for the rally.
One thing Michael wanted me to express is that he is only one of thousands of brave Canadian men and women serving in Afghanistan today, and that it is his hope that they receive the honour and full support of all Canadians for the dangerous but important work they are doing. We heard today from President Karzai how essential this work is.
As a 20 year veteran of the armed forces, I salute our brave soldiers who are truly making a difference.
My colleagues and I wish Michael a speedy recovery. We will keep him and his family in our prayers.