The recent deaths of Corporal Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent have raised concerns for Canadians across the country about the safety of soldiers this Nov. 11. These events, however, have not deterred Canadian support and participation in the upcoming Remembrance Day ceremonies. The Vancouver Sun has reported that “B.C.’s legions have seen a huge demand for poppies ahead of the official start to the Remembrance Day campaign” in order to “show support for the slain soldiers and their families.”
Ltn. (Navy) Paul Pendergast, Maritime Forces Pacific Public Affairs, urged students and the general public to attend ceremonies throughout Victoria. “During the month of November, Canadians come together to honour those who have sacrificed to make our world a safer place,” Pendergast said. “All Canadians are encouraged to honour our brave men and women by attending a Remembrance Day ceremony, visiting a local cenotaph or monument, thanking veterans, wearing a poppy, and sharing a story about a loved one who has served.”
This year will continue to uphold past traditions, and there will be no changes made to the structure of the ceremony in lieu of recent events. All cenotaphs will have a parade on Nov. 11 at 11 in the morning. “The public is encouraged to come out and participate in the Remembrance Ceremonies as they do each year and they can expect that the ceremonies will carry on just as in previous years,” Pendergast said.
Whether there will be increased security at these ceremonies has not been confirmed. “As in years past we will have uniformed officers at the ceremony site,” Cst. Mike Russell from the Victoria Police Department stated. “We may be increasing the numbers of those officers given recent events, but the final decision on number of deployed officers has not been finalized.” Although there will be a large number of officers on duty, the majority will not be working but instead march in the parade to show their support.
“There are many reasons to come out this year to honour those who have served, and those who have made the ultimate sacrifice,” Pendergast said. “For instance it is the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the First World War and 75th anniversary of the beginning of the Second World War. It makes it a good opportunity to come out and recognize the 650,000 Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served in the First World War, and the 1 million Canadians and Newfoundlanders who served in the Second World War.”
In memory of Canadians who have served this country, and continue to do so, Pendergast encouraged the public to show their support at various locations throughout Victoria. For new students who are unfamiliar with the city and want to know where to find a ceremony, there will be a message releasing locations this week in newspapers and online sources.