The 10-year-old, who lives in Lower Onslow, is one of 22 students across Canada, and only one of two from Nova Scotia, who will attend the Governor General’s Awards in Ottawa. He earned the honour thanks to his heritage fair project on the Black Devil’s Brigade that was entered in Canada’s History for Kids Young Citizens national competition. His four-minute online video outlined the exploits of a Second World War First Special Service Force (FSSF).
“I feel pretty excited. I feel really good and proud of myself. I knew I tried my best. I looked at some of the (other) videos and they were amazing. I was surprised they chose me,” said Sam.
Sam is eager to travel to Ottawa on Oct. 30 for three days. While there, he and his mom Stephanie will visit Parliament Hill, Rideau Hall, a war museum and the Canada History Forum, where his video will be played.
Sam’s video tells the story of the Black Devil’s Brigade’s accomplishments during wartime. His great-grandfather, Millard Rector, was a member of the brigade and was the inspiration behind the project.
In his video, Sam talks about the elite force of Canadian and American men who were only called to battle on certain special missions, and during its time, the brigade never failed a mission. The youngster also interviewed Truro’s Herb Peppard, a war veteran and member of the FSSF.
Stephanie said she’s incredibly proud of her son. Being one of the few chosen “surprised me but I knew he had a chance. It is well deserved,” she said.
Sam said he couldn’t have made it to the national competition without public support.
“I’d just like to thank everyone who voted (for my video) because that has half of my score,” he said.
As for his next historical project, Sam said he isn’t sure what the topic will be.
“I don’t know yet, but I like doing them on what people don’t know about and teach them.”