This year’s Heritage Day activities on Monday, Feb. 19, will honour Middleton native and Second World War hero Mona Louise Parsons.
Her resistance to Nazi occupation in the Netherlands, where she was living at the time and her bravery in sheltering downed Allied airmen and helping them avoid capture by the Nazis make her a prominent figure in Canadian and Nova Scotia history.
“Heritage Day celebrates our province’s cultural heritage and the contributions of all Nova Scotians,” said Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage Leo Glavine. “Telling Mona Parsons’s story will allow Nova Scotians to discover her and celebrate her achievements. She will not be forgotten and will inspire Nova Scotians for a long time to come.”
Heritage Day is the opportunity to celebrate extraordinary Nova Scotians and tell the stories of those who, like Mona Parsons, have had a profound impact on the identity, culture and heritage of Nova Scotia.
“Mona Parsons was an exemplary Nova Scotian in that, in Nazi-occupied Holland, she embodied Joseph Howe’s words of ‘What is right? What is just? What is for the public good?'” said author Andria Hill-Lehr who has written a book and a play about Parsons’s life. “She put her life on the line for those, and nearly lost it. She deserves to be remembered by all Canadians.”
Several activities commemorating Mona Parsons are planned in Middleton, Wolfville and Halifax:
— Thursday, Feb. 15: Speakers’ Symposium, Untold stories: Mona Parsons and Women in Nova Scotia History, at the Lord Nelson Hotel, 1515 South Park St., Halifax. The event has an afternoon session, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. and an evening session, 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
— Saturday, Feb. 17: Mona Parsons Birthday Celebration in Wolfville, with the Women of Wolfville and the Wolfville Historical Society. The event starts at 8:30 a.m. at the Wolfville Farmers’ Market, 24 Elm Ave.
— Sunday, Feb. 18 at 2 p.m.: Reading at the Halifax Central Library, 5440 Spring Garden Rd., by playwright Andria Hill-Lehr of The Bitterest Time
— Monday, Feb. 19 at 2 p.m.: A celebration of Mona’s life at the MacDonald Museum, 21 School St., Middleton
— Wednesday, Feb. 28 at 7 p.m.: Author reading by Andria Hill-Lehr, from her book, From Privilege to Prison, from Nova Scotia to Nazi Europe, at the Keshen Goodman Public Library, 330 Lacewood Ave., Halifax.
More information on Mona Parsons, and a detailed schedule of events are available at, http://heritageday.novascotia.ca.
Source: Media Release