Committed to Canada

Throughout his life, Garfield remained passionately committed to Canada and its people. During the Great Depression, he bought bankrupt Canadian bakeries that would otherwise likely have closed their doors, saving jobs. He also came up with a plan to help the country’s prairie farmers, who were in desperate need of new markets for their crops with the collapse of wheat prices. Garfield proposed buying British bakeries, modernizing them, and importing Canadian wheat to make a better British loaf of bread. The venture was so successful that he became known in the press as “Britain’s Bigger Baker”.

spitfireWhen Canadian troops stationed in England during World War II complained of boredom in their camps, Garfield donated 500 radios. His contribution of £100,000 pounds to replace 16 fighter planes lost at the height of the Battle of Britain helped inspire hundreds of Spitfire Funds throughout Britain and the Commonwealth that raised millions of pounds for the war effort. He and his wife also opened their home outside London to Canadian service men and women. At the end of war with Germany in 1945, Garfield returned home to Canada, convinced that his native land was entering a new era of prosperity.