History & Origin

The Canada House

This Norman style house was built in 1928 with two symmetrical sides. One named ROGER, and the other DENISE.

In 1936, both sides were sold. The Roger side changed owners several times while the Denise side was bought by Edmond and Cécile HOFFER, Hervé’s grandparents.

Since then, this house has remained in the family and Nicole HOFFER and her sons, Olivier and Nicolas, are now the owners.

In 1943, the house was requisitioned and occupied by the Germans, saving it from destruction.

On the Allied side, it represented a remarkable landmark for the troops preparing the D-Day landings. It had to be preserved.

At 8.15 am, on the 6th of June 1944, the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada regiment landed on the beach. Its soldiers entered the house and used grenades to dislodge several German soldiers hiding in the cellar. They were taken prisoner in the south yard.

The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada regiment was soon followed by the Chaudière and the Fort Garry Horse regiments.

This house was the first to be liberated by sea on the morning of June 6th 1944, with numerous casualties.

For several years, the HOFFER family has kept in touch with the veterans and their families who came back to see this “fameuse maison”, so important to their memory. For many of them, it was the first image of Normandy.

Thanks to those multiple emotional encounters and their testimonies, the HOFFER family has been able to pass on the history of this house and the sacrifice of these soldiers with great dedication.

In 2022, as a thank you for their work and generosity, Nicole and her late husband, Hervé, received the Meritorious Service Medal, the highest distinction a civilian can be awarded with in Canada.