|Birth: ||Jul. 21, 1978, Canada|
|Death: ||Apr. 23, 2009, Afghanistan|
Major, assigned to Task Force Afghanistan headquarters, deployed with the Canadian contingent of NATO forces. Aged 30. She was found dead in her room at the Kandahar Airfield base. Canadian military officials say the incident is under investigation. No further details have been released, although enemy action has been ruled out.
Maj. Mendes grew up on her family's apple farm near Wicklow, Ontario. She graduated in 2001 with a history degree from the Royal Military College in Kingston and later attained a master's degree in international affairs from Carleton University. On a previous tour of duty in Afghanistan, a captain at the time, she was attached to a military intelligence unit. She was one of 11 soldiers who returned to Canada after a friendly fire incident in September 2006. The nature of their injuries was not disclosed.
A lay chaplain at the base described Mendes, "Mic" to her friends, as a person who tried to make life more enjoyable for those around her by baking cookies, making cards or just being there when they needed a friendly ear. She always strove to do her best and was respected for her professional knowledge and work ethic. "The world will be an emptier place without her presence."
Her honours and awards include the Canadian Forces Decoration (CD).
Maj. Mendes is survived by her husband Victor Mendes, parents Dianne and Ron Knight, sister Melissa (Rodney Bampton and their children), grandmother Jean Knight, and extended Knight and Mendes families.
As is tradition for all Canadian soldiers who die in the Afghanistan mission, a ramp ceremony for Maj. Mendes was held at Kandahar Airfield and a memorial plaque in her honour will be placed at a shaded cenotaph. She is the 118th military fatality since Canada first sent troops in 2002. A diplomat and two aid workers have also died.
Military funeral held on Friday, May 1, 2009 at Sydenham United Church, Kingston. Memorial Service held in St. Andrew's United Church, Grafton, Ontario on May 2, 2009.
* Sincere thanks to grainne for her kindness in sponsoring this memorial.
Saint Marys Roman Catholic Cemetery
Created by: Milou
Record added: Apr 24, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 36265774