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Lest We Forget, Nov. 11, 2017

What did you do for Remembrance Day this year?  We switched things up and instead of going to the Military Museum ceremony, we went to the Field of Crosses one on Memorial Drive.

It was very moving  and sobering to see over 3,400 crosses which make up the mock cemetery in memory of southern Alberta soldiers who enlisted and lost their lives fighting for our freedom.

The Master of Ceremonies, Jordan Witzel, of Global TV, had a very simple yet powerful message to start off the event.  He said that those who sacrificed their lives for us, did so, so that we could have “love, hope and tolerance for one another. We could pray or not pray.  We could vote or protest.”  Those words truly struck a chord with me.

This year, they honoured fallen soldiers from the battle of Passchendaele in Belgium.  It was very sobering to have the children’s choir hum in the background as wreaths were laid as each of the fallen soldiers were mentioned and at the same time, a child held up a picture of each of the soldiers who were being honoured.  A picture truly does speak a thousand words.

The moment of silence was followed by the Calgary Fire Department Pipers and Drums playing Amazing Grace.  This song is such a powerful one on its own, but a whole knew kind of magic occurred when the entire crowd started humming along to this song.  This was followed by the Calgary Burns Club Singers singing the song in its entirety.  It was finished with another round of pipes, the singers as well as people humming again to the song.  I felt a very deep connection amongst everyone in attendance.

At the end of the ceremony, we were all asked to leave our poppies behind on a cross that spoke to us in a way of honouring and remembrance.

This ceremony was simple, yet impactful.  Thank you to those who fought for our freedom, those who took the time to coordinate this ceremony, and those who chose to show their support by participating.  Lest we forget indeed.

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