Ontario farmer loses part of 200-year-old family farm to military
After years of fighting to save part of his family farm from being appropriated by the Department of Defence, an 85-year-old Ontario farmer's slice of Canadian heritage will now be torn to the ground.
This week, demolition of Frank Meyers' Trenton, Ont., farm -- owned by his family for more than 200 years -- will begin.
Bulldozers will make way for a sprawling 900-acre military camp.
"They’ve just bullied me for years," Meyers told CTV Toronto. "What can I do? … Breaks my heart, too."
According to DND, the Canadian Forces looked at other options where the training facility could be built but decided Meyers' farm was the best option because land-, air- and water-based training exercises could be carried out there.
Meyers, who had been working the fields for as long as he can remember, was compensated for the land transfer in a confidential deal.
But Meyers claims he has not received any money.
"I have never received one nickel," Meyers said. "The government is going to pay for the lawyers, now they’re telling me it’s coming out of me, out of my pay."
Although Meyers has lost the fight to save his farm, the lifelong farmer has received a lot of support in recent weeks. Driven by a Facebook campaign that amassed more than 20,000 "Likes," small rallies in support of Meyers were held across the country.
Protesters held placards that read "Ashamed of our government !!! Development is not prosperity when it jeopardizes the future and generations to come!!!."
An online campaign, which had collected more than 8,400 signatures, was also started.
With a report from CTV Toronto’s Colin D’Mello