Lest we forget: Remembrance Day in Canada (Vancouver)

Remembrance Day - Poppy Day - Armistice Day - Veterans Day
photo credit: Glyn Lowe Photos

There are few days in the calendar year when I feel more proud to live in Canada, in Vancouver, to be an adopted Canadian, than Remembrance Day in Canada. The celebrations across the country are beautiful and touching, and I always get to hear stories from veterans in the war. My good friend Meghan Warby alerted me to this video that honors and acknowledges Aboriginal veterans’ contributions, achievements and sacrifices, as well as those of all veterans and currently serving members. It’s fantastic that they are formally recognized on Remembrance Day, November 11, as much deserved.

What is Remembrance Day? From the Veteran Affairs Canada website:

Every year on November 11, Canadians pause in a silent moment of remembrance for the men and women who have served, and continue to serve our country during times of war, conflict and peace. We honour those who fought for Canada in the First World War (1914-1918), the Second World War (1939-1945), and the Korean War (1950-1953), as well as those who have served since then. More than 1,500,000 Canadians have served our country in this way, and more than 100,000 have died. They gave their lives and their futures so that we may live in peace.

The Veteran Affairs Canada website reminds us of what and why we should remember, especially World War I and II, but also the Korean War. And given Canada’s efforts in Afghanistan, it’s also important to remember those who have fallen throughout this period too.

There are a number of things we do to remember. As per the Veteran Affairs Canada website:

  • On November 11, we pause for two minutes of silent tribute, and we attend commemorative ceremonies in memory of our war dead.
  • Poppies are worn as the symbol of remembrance, a reminder of the blood-red flower that still grows on the former battlefields of France and Belgium.
  • Visiting memorials is another way of remembering.

In Vancouver, I found what the City of Vancouver plans to do to commemorate:

Join us for the City’s annual Remembrance Day ceremony on Friday, November 11 at 10:30 am at the cenotaph in Victory Square (West Hastings and Cambie). Prior to the ceremony, view the Vancouver cauldron at Jack Poole Plaza burst into flame as Canada’s flag is handed over from an older to younger veteran at 8 am. The flame will be extinguished at 11:02 am to coincide with the ending of the two-minute silence at Victory Square.

While no member of my family fought in the World Wars, I am grateful especially to those Canadians who did to preserve the peace in the country that now is my adopted home. Lest we forget. At 11:00am please observe 2 minutes of silence.

Related posts:

  1. A quick visit to Canada Day at Canada Place
  2. Canada Day 2011 Celebrations in Vancouver at Canada Place and around Vancouver
  3. National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women – December 6, 2010
  4. Lest We Forget: Remembrance Day in Vancouver 2010
  5. Remembrance Day

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