For John Griffin, honouring the military service of veterans is in the blood.

at 16 years old, John Ivor Griffin lied about his age in order to enlist.A member of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 56 in Swift Current, he has a family history of military service, and it was one of those family members who inspired him to undertake his latest project; compiling the information and history of the 8th Recce (14th Canadian Hussars).

John Ivor Griffin at Camp Borden in 1942Griffin's grandfather, John Ivor Griffin was a trooper in the 8th, having lied about his age in order to serve with the unit as a Bren gunner with the reconnaissance unit. He passed away in 1977, and John had wanted to do a project to honour his service.

"I actually didn't know a lot about his service because he passed away before I was born, unfortunately. He died at age 50 from a heart attack. So I started it just trying to honour his service and learn more about his comrades in arms and their stories from when he served."

On display at the Swift Current Legion is a similar tome; a written history of the 209th Swift Current Battalion from the First World War, and Griffin noticed that they did not have one from the local regiment during the Second World War, and decided to change that.

A written history of the 209th Swift Current Battalion, a precursor to John Griffin's own work.The two motivations met in a four-month effort to produce the final hard-cover copy detailing the names, ranks and other information on any member who was awarded medals or honours. As well as birth dates, dates of death and next of kin information for any regiment member who lost their lives during the conflict.

Dedicating much of his time from January until May to the completion of the project, Griffin says he didn't find it too difficult, with a lot of it being devoted to the research portion, and hopes that it can also serve as the first step for anyone who is looking at researching their own ancestors who served with the 8th Recce.

"A lot of it was researching the individual members of the regiment and getting their information and then compiling it into this book. If someone is looking for their ancestor, this would give them a great amount of information so that they could go to the library and archives."

The 8th Recce's (short for reconnaissance) primary role in Europe was that of a scout; always ahead of the main infantry to relay information about the state of the enemy. After the war, it was deactivated in 1945 but continued to function as the 8th Armoured Car Regiment and a few other names until being effectively disbanded in 1968.

The book, detailing the stats and histories of those that fought in the 8th Recce will have a physical copy on location at the Swift Current Legion. While electronic copies will be available at the Swift Current Museum, the Saskatchewan Genealogical Society in Regina and the 8th Recce (14th Canadian Hussars) Facebook Group.