La version de votre navigateur est obsolète. Nous vous recommandons vivement d'actualiser votre navigateur vers la dernière version.



Since the end of World War II, the French Army have taken part in operations led by international organizations primarily NATO and the United Nations.

Willy Breton, a French soldier serving with the Gendarmerie Nationale, returned from his third tour in Afghanistan in 2010, with the desire to honour the memory of two colleagues who were based near Kabul, both were killed in combat during their mission in Afghanistan.

Willy Breton was deeply touched by the mark of respect paid by other soldiers from allied NATO countries who lined the route on which the bodies of his comrades in arms were transported on their way to the military air base in Kabul. All the soldiers from the different Nations spontaneously formed a guard of honour along the path of the escorted soldiers to pay their respect to both victims.


Willy decided to do everything he could to make the memory of his comrades live among us. An idea came to him to create a Memorial dedicated to all Security Forces personnel who died whilst serving under the banner of NATO since World War II.

Supported by two Associations, the AECOPSD (European Association of Corps and Organisations of Security and Defence) for which Willy is Chancellor, and CNAMFSA (National Circle of Former French Military Veterans Stationed in Germany) whose Chairman is Philippe Lyoen, and with the benefaction of the town of Fréthun, whose Mayoress is Catherine Fournier, Willy set about making his idea a reality.


Fréthun was chosen as it has the advantage of being central to its surrounding NATO members and is connected to London, United Kingdom, Brussels, Belgium and Paris, by Calais Fréthun International Railway Station. With the consent and support from the people of Fréthun and the NATO authorities, the NATO Memorial has been constructed in the town.

The Memorial was inaugurated on 25th February 2012 in the presence of the families of victims who fell or were injured whilst serving on a NATO mission. National Representatives from France, Consular and Military representatives from other NATO member countries were also in attendance as were associations such as Souvenir Français, associations from Belgium who are members of the Royal Entente in Ypres, and representatives of the United Kingdom charity organisation Help for Heroes.


Two young British soldiers, Craig Wood, who was serving with the 2nd Regiment of Rifles, was injured by a detonated land mine which caused serious wounds to three of his limbs, this resulted in a triple amputation operation. The second soldier, Alex Bauer who was also serving with the 2nd Regiment of Rifles was also caught in the blast, he was fortunately able to attend the injuries of Craig Wood, his actions subsequently saved Craig’s life. We also had the honour of the presence of the late Lt. Eric Smallwood, 1st Royal Tank Regiment, who was a veteran of World War II.


Mr. Willy Breton, our Chairman, has financed 95% of the cost to build and inaugurate the NATO Memorial.

The NATO Memorial is for the Remembrance all those soldiers who have sacrificed their lives whilst serving under the banner of NATO, the Memorial also permits families, friends and our supporters to gather and offer their prayers and thoughts of their friends and loved ones.

The NATO Memorial is dedicated to the duty of Remembrance, it is also to Encourage and involve new generations to promote the Act of Remembrance both at European and International level.


The Memorial is also a symbol for Peace and Reconciliation.

World Peace is often difficult to maintain, however by creating strong relationships with a focus on international relations and by diplomacy, we can aim to achieve stability and preserve the status quo.

The NATO Memorial Federation administers the Memorial and the Annual Ceremony. Mr Willy Breton is the Chairman and Mr Daniel Breuiller holds the position of Vice Chairman. The Memorial Federation currently has more than 29,000 members from all NATO Member Countries and NATO Partnership countries, comprising of either Individual or Association group members.

There is no cost to becoming a member and your membership is valid for 5 years.


The aim of the NATO Memorial Federation is to promote and enhance the reputation of the NATO Memorial and the principles it represents. To cultivate programs that have been envisaged for the development of the Memorial and its ongoing purpose, to uphold the Duty of Remembrance for all the Soldiers who have been killed or injured whilst serving on a NATO mission. To grant respect and solitude to all the families who have had loved ones taken from them, and also to support the Soldiers, their colleagues and friends during their time of reflection.

The NATO Memorial Federation brings people together, including institutions and associations that hold comparable values, and those who wish to support the ongoing development of the NATO Memorial and its fundamental purpose.

NATO Memorial Federation representatives regularly attend association forums, sporting and other public events. We fulfil our role as administrators to promote the NATO Memorial and its renown values.

Since the inauguration of the NATO Memorial, the NATO Memorial Federation organizes an Annual Commemorative Ceremony.

On the 3rd October 2015 we held the third NATO Memorial Commemoration, which was supported by more than 350 people. Host Countries for the 2015 Ceremony were Germany, a full member of NATO, and Austria a Partnership Country of NATO.

We were honoured by the presence of His Imperial Royal Highness Sandor Habsburg Lothringen, Archduke of Austria, and his wife Herta Margarete Habsburg Lothringen Princess of Tuscany who is the President of the Flame of Peace Foundation. We are honoured that they accepted to be our Patrons.

The Ceremony commenced with an Inter Religious Ceremony, prayers of each faith were spoken and prayers for families were held.

Numerous Military Attachés and Civil authorities were represented, also French and foreign officials along with the families of the fallen and wounded soldiers.

The NATO Memorial Federation presented the NATO Memorial Trophy and Certificate in recognition of the Duty of Memory, the pursuit for peace, and acknowledgment of civil defence undertaking. The Princess of Tuscany Herta Margarete Habsburg Lothringen, President of the Flame of Peace Foundation was awarded the Trophy and Certificate in recognition of her tireless pursuit of Peace through her Flame of Peace organisation.

The NATO Memorial Federation was honoured to receive a special "shared memory" award from the European "Citizenship, Security and Defence" 2015. The award was presented to our Vice Chairman Willy Breton at the European Congress and Safety Defence Ceremony in BERLIN on 18th November 2015.



Memorial Description

The Memorial is made from polished granite called "Orion". The Memorial comprises of;

- A lower base plinth 120 x 120 x 10

- An upper base plinth 80 x 80 x 15

- Two Adjacent Headstones, the first headstone displays the NATO logo engraved in white paint. Both Headstones are 80 x 180 x 12cms


* The first headstone: The letters are engraved in gold leaf under the NATO logo:





* The second headstone: The 28 NATO Countries flags under the NATO flag. Each flag is engraved and coloured. These flags are etched onto the Headstone in alphabetical order using the French language. 

* On the base supporting the Headstones: there is an engraved and coloured AE-COPSD logo and text 'European Association of Members of Public Bodies and Agencies of Security and Defence'. The CNAMFSA abbreviation and the words 'National Circle former French Military stationed in Germany' is etched into the plinth stone using a coloured etching paint.




The NATO Memorial was inaugurated on 25th February 2012.

The Memorial is dedicated to the memory of the soldiers who sacrificed their lives in the service of NATO.

The NATO Memorial is unique in Europe. It was created to honour the fallen of the 28 NATO member countries and to the 41 NATO Partner Countries.

The NATO Memorial Federation purpose is to develop and continue in the Duty of Remembrance and to involve new generations in the framework of European integration and International relations.

This Memorial is also a monument dedicated to Peace and Reconciliation.  


Marie-Pierre Williams

Honorary Secretary

NATO Memorial Federation


Cookie Policy

This site uses cookies to store information on your computer.

Do you accept?