Nine decades of re­mem­ber­ing

The Compass - - COMMUNITY BOARD -

In Canada, the first Re­mem­brance Day cer­e­mony took place at 11.00 a.m. on Novem­ber 11, 1919. This means that we have been re­mem­ber­ing our war he­roes for nine decades now and the cer­e­monies are still very rel­e­vant.

Orig­i­nally, the ob­jec­tive of Re­mem­brance Day was to pay homage to all those who gave their lives in the Great War. To­day, this spe­cial day com­mem­o­rates all mem­bers of the Cana­dian mil­i­tary who have per­ished on land or at sea dur­ing past or cur­rent wars.

For 90 years, cer­e­monies across the coun­try have been oc­ca­sions to ex­press our col­lec­tive mem­o­ries, com­pas­sion and re­spect for the miss­ing and the dead. We wear pop­pies and ob­serve two min­utes of si­lence. Ev­ery sec­ond passed in si­lence should also be de­voted to think­ing of the coura­geous nurses who cared for the wounded dur­ing two world wars, to farm work­ers and of­fice work­ers who con­trib­uted to the war ef­fort as well as to the wives and moth­ers who re­ceived the ter­ri­ble news of the dis­ap­pear­ance of a brother, son or hus­band.

For those of us born in peace time, the ter­ri­ble dam­age wrought by war is never very real. But on Novem­ber 11, we have ev­ery oc­ca­sion to re­mem­ber the ef­forts made by Cana­di­ans, both men and women, who are sta­tioned in places such as Afghanistan. In­deed, since the ter­ri­ble events of Septem­ber 11, 200l many Cana­di­ans have died in con­flict zones. And fi­nally, Re­mem­brance Day is also the time to take a mo­ment of si­lence and vow to make the same sac­ri­fices as th­ese heroic Cana­di­ans, if our peace should be threat­ened.

Cana­di­ans have ob­served Re­mem­brance Day for nine decades now. (Re­pro­duced with the per­mis­sion of Vet­er­ans Af­fairs Canada)

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