Premier Stephen McNeil is encouraging Nova Scotians to honour past and present members of Canada’s Armed Forces by taking part in Remembrance Day events on Saturday, Nov. 11.
“It’s important that we all take time to recognize and honour the sacrifices of men and women who have served and continue to serve our country,” said Premier McNeil. “I encourage Nova Scotians to talk to veterans and say thank you for their service to Canada.”
Every year on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, Nova Scotians and other Canadians gather to observe a moment of silence and mark the sacrifice of so many.
This year has added significance as it is the 100th anniversary of both the Battle of Vimy Ridge and the Battle of Passchendaele. Nova Scotians, including the Nova Scotia Highlanders, fought and died in both battles.
Passchendaele is the bloodiest fight in Canadian military history, with 4,000 Canadian soldiers killed and almost 12,000 more injured. Events marking the centennial are being held in Belgium, where Hants West MLA Chuck Porter is representing Premier McNeil.
On Thursday, Mr. Porter joined other Canadian officials at the unveiling of Canada Gate, companion piece to The Last Steps Memorial Arch in Halifax. Collectively, these gates, designed by Windsor artist Nancy Keating and built by Al Simm of Falmouth, Hants Co., are known as Portals of Remembrance.
Today is the anniversary of the end of the Battle of Passchendaele. The Government of Canada is holding ceremonies at Tyne Cot Cemetery, where more than 1,000 Canadian soldiers are buried, and the Passchendaele Canadian Memorial.
“Vimy and Passchendaele are defining events in our nation’s history,” said Premier McNeil. “We pay tribute to those who fought and died for our freedom.”
Remembrance Day ceremonies involve veterans of all wars and peace support operations, the Canadian Armed Forces, RCMP and municipal police forces as well as youth and the general public.
Nova Scotians interested in attending local Remembrance Day events can check with their local branch of the Royal Canadian Legion or their local municipality.