By David F. Rooney
Hundreds of Revelstokians braved the chill rain on Remembrance Day to honour the men who served and died on their behalf in two world wars.
“As our lives get busier and more distracted it becomes more important than ever to pause for a few minutes on Remembrance Day and reflect on those sacrificed their lives in the service of our country in both wartime and on peacekeeping missions,” Mayor Mark McKee said in a speech to the crowd.
Remembrance Day may have had its origins in the end of the First World War 97 years ago, but the effects of the war on Canadian families lingers on, he said.
Todd Driediger, president of Royal Canadian Legion Branch 46, recalled that the First World War was so horrific that many, many people believed it would be the ear to end all wars. Sadly, that proved to be an unreachable ideal and 21 years after the end of the first war in 1918 Canadians again went to war.
“It is our responsibility to preserve and protect the peace they fought to achieve,” he said. “They died for us, for our homes, our families and our friends and the future they believed in.”
This week has seen many small gestures of remembrance, from attendance at the ceremony itself to small ceremonies of remembrance at our city’s local schools.
It should also be a time to think about the dwindling number of veterans. The men who survived the First World Ware are now all gone and the ranks of those who came home at the end of the second war in 1945 is rapidly thinning, as are the number of of Royal Canadian Legion members. EZ Rock’s Shaun Aquiline had a timely interview with one Revelstokian that I’d like to share with you.
“I had an interview with Ed Koski from the Legion,” Shaun told The Current. “It was quite interesting, wasn’t just about the cenotaph and paying our respects which, is obviously what this is about. It was more about the Legion — the state of the Legion here in town and in Canada and I thought it was quite interesting after the whole interview process was over.”
By David F. Rooney