Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Remembering Our Heroes

Today is Remembrance Day in Canada and several other countries around the world. My son, Jeffrey, along with his Squadron from Royal Military College (RMC) will be in our Nation's Capital to participate in the ceremonies. He has worked hard to organize their involvement in two separate parades and is proud that his Squadron, which currently holds the right of line position (top Squadron) was chosen to represent RMC in Ottawa on this day.

The main parade will be held at the National War Memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The second one will take place at the National Military Cemetery. My son will be the Guard Commander for the latter parade. He will be wearing scarlets and a pith helmet, and will carry a sword. He and his Squadron will also have the honour of being the first marching contingent behind the Veterans in this parade. It's uncertain if this will be televised but I'll be watching for him anyway. You can view a live feed on the CBC website at 10 am Eastern Time. Just click on "Audio & Video - Lest We Forget"

At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, please pause to honour those who have given their lives so that we can enjoy the freedom we assume as our right. Two minutes - it's a mere pittance of time.


video
The background of this song and video can be found here.


97 Canadian soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan. They are:

Sgt. Scott Shipway, 36 • Cpl. Andrew Grenon, 23 • Cpl. Mike Seggie, 21 • Pte. Chad Horn, 21 • Sgt. Shawn Eades, 33 • Sapper Stephan John Stock, 25 • Cpl. Dustin Roy Robert Joseph Wasden, 25 • Master Cpl. Erin Doyle, 32 • Master Cpl. Josh Roberts, 30 • Cpl. James Hayward Arnal, 25 • Pte. Colin William Wilmot, 24 • Cpl. Brendan Anthony Downey, 37 • Capt. Jonathan Sutherland Snyder, 26 • Capt. Richard (Steve) Leary, 32 • Cpl. Michael Starker, 36 • Pte. Terry John Street, 24 • Sgt. Jason Boyes, 32 • Bombardier Jeremie Ouellet, 22 • Trooper Michael Yuki Hayakaze, 25 • Cpl. Etienne Gonthier, 21 • Trooper Richard Renaud, 26 • Cpl. Eric Labbe, 31 • Warrant Officer Hani Massouh, 41 • Cpl. Kevin Megeney, 25 • Sgt. Donald Lucas, 31 • Cpl. Aaron E. Williams, 23 • Pte. Kevin Vincent Kennedy, 20 • Pte. David Robert Greenslade, 20 • Cpl. Christopher Paul Stannix, 24 • Cpl. Brent Donald Poland, 37 • Master Cpl. Allan Stewart, 31 • Trooper Patrick James Pentland, 23 • Master Cpl. Anthony Klumpenhouwer, 25 • Cpl. Matthew McCully, 25 • Master Cpl. Darrell Jason Priede, 30 • Trooper Darryl Caswell, 25 • Cpl. Stephen Frederick Bouzane, 26 • Pte. Joel Vincent Wiebe, 22 • Sgt. Christos Karigiannis, 30 • Capt. Matthew Johnathan Dawe, 27 • Master Cpl. Colin Bason, 28 • Cpl. Cole Bartsch, 23 • Pte. Lane Watkins, 20 • Cpl. Jordan Anderson, 25 • Capt. Jefferson Francis, 37 • Pte Simon Longtin, 23 • Master Warrant Officer Mario Mercier, 43 • Master Cpl. Christian Duchesne, 34 • Major Raymond Ruckpaul, 42 • Cpl. Nathan Hornburg, 24 • Cpl. Nicolas Raymond Beauchamp, 28 • Pte. Michel Levesque, 25 • Gunner Jonathan Dion, 27 • Cpl. Paul Davis, 28 • Master Cpl. Timothy Wilson, 30 • Pte. Robert Costall, 22 • Cpl. Matthew Dinning, 23 • Bombardier Myles Mansell, 25 • Cpl. Randy Payne, 32 • Lieut. William Turner, 45 • Capt. Nichola Goddard, 26 • Cpl. Anthony Boneca, 21 • Cpl. Francisco Gomez, 44 • Cpl. Jason Warren, 29 • Pte. Kevin Dallaire, 22 • Sgt. Vaughan Ingram, 35 • Cpl. Bryce Keller, 27 8 Cpl. Christopher Reid, 34 • Master Cpl. Raymond Arndt, 31 • Master Cpl. Jeffrey Walsh, 33 • Cpl. Andrew Eykelenboom, 23 • Cpl. David Braun, 27 • Pte. William Cushley, 21 • Warrant Officer Frank Mellish, 38 • Warrant Officer Richard Nolan, 39 • Sgt. Shane Stachnik, 30 • Pte. Mark Anthony Graham, 33 • Cpl. Glen Arnold, 32 • Pte. David Byers, 22 • Cpl. Shane Keating, 30 • Cpl. Keith Morley, 30 • Pte. Josh Klukie, 23 • Sgt. Craig Gillam, 40 • Cpl. Robert Mitchell, 32 • Trooper Mark Wilson, 39 • Sgt. Darcy Tedford, 32 • Pte. Blake Williamson, 23 • Chief Warrant Officer Robert Girouard, 46 • Cpl. Albert Storm, 36 • Pte. Braun Woodfield, 24 • Cpl. Jamie Murphy, 26 • Cpl. Robbie Beerenfenger, 29 • Sgt. Robert Short, 42 • Cpl. Ainsworth Dyer, 24 • Pte. Richard Green, 21 • Sgt. Marc Leger, 29 • Pte. Nathan Smith, 26

May we never forget.

39 comments:

Frank Baron said...

Amen.

Cimba7200 said...

Your troops and ours (NZ)fought together as British Commonwealth during the first and second world wars Hilary. Yes, we celebrated this memorial today too. - Dave

Protege said...

What a beautiful tribute to the men of your country that have sacrificed their life in the line of duty. We should never forget.
Hilary, you must be very proud of your son, even if you feel anguish in your heart of what is in store for him in the future.
That is also courage in its own right.

Indrani said...

Beautiful tribute, Hilary! I was just thinking what kind of emotions you must be experiencing. Hope Peace prevails!

the Bag Lady said...

I shall watch for Jeffrey on the TV! Wonderful post, Hilary - we must never forget the sacrifices made for us by these brave men and women!

lime said...

what an excellent post. as your neighbor to the south i will also be remembering. the video is a very moving reminder (saw it on another blog as well).

carla said...

I had no idea.

thank you for reminding the GREAT BLOGWORLD us.

Phyllis Entis said...

I wish we could access CBC and watch the parade. On this side of the border, the poppies don't grow out of lapels.

Let's also remember the other members of our families who served in past wars – Uncle Reuben, both our Dads, Cousin Maurice Vineberg, and my Dad's brother - my Uncle Moishe, who lost both legs when his tank was shot out from under him.

Lest we – and others – forget.

Cuzzie P

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Hil, I'm setting up my VCR now, and leaving for the Cenetaph in a few minutes to lay Dad's wreath, with Steph. Beautiful post, and I'll be looking for Jeffrey. Love,Andi

kcinnova said...

What a wonderful tribute you have made, Hilary. I wish I could see your son perform his duties today.
I'm not headed into the big city, but I will be attending an incredible program this evening (one that takes an entire year to put together). Like your own family, mine is populated by veterans. I blogged about it today, too.

Mary Alice had the same video on her blog, and it is incredibly touching. The song was new to me, and I think I will be sharing it with many today via e-mail.

Mental P Mama said...

Beautiful tribute. Amen.

kcinnova said...

Am watching the CBC programme online right now. Somehow it seems much more important than going to the gym or running errands today.
Those older gentlemen's faces look so beautiful as they remember and honor their comrades.

Suldog said...

May God bless all of those who have given of their lives to protect us and to keep us free.

MamaGeek @ Works For Us said...

A-men to that. What an awesome, powerful tribute.

photowannabe said...

We remember here in the US too.
May we never forget.
Beautiful post.
You have a son to be proud of. Thanks him for me.

photowannabe said...

I just listened to the video and was so touched. 2 minutes is just a pitence of time to remember what has been sacrificed to keep us free.
Thank you Hilary.

Reb said...

Well done!

Elizabeth said...

Thank you for posting today.
Yes, we must always remember the young people - always so very young - who are willing to put their lives on the line for others.
I'm English and I miss the poppies we always wore.
In the US we do remember but too many clothing sales.....

Anonymous said...

Hilary, in my hurry to rush into town for our services, I didn't get a chance to tell you just how very proud we all are of Jeffrey.
I watched the replay of the parade in Ottawa, over & over again, trying to pinpoint Jeffrey, was he the first in line? Love, Andi

Daryl said...

Irony ... as I was clicking into your blog I could hear from beyond my office windows the sound of bag pipes .. I got up and what did I see? Line upon line of uniformed soldiers, sailors and Marines .. drummers, fifes, and bag pipes .. marching across Manhattan in honor of ALL who have served, past and present ... thank you for keeping us safe .. and may Jeffrey never have to go to war.

:-Daryl

Hilary said...

Thank you all for your thoughtful comments. I wish I could have been in Ottawa with Jeffrey or at least see him on TV. Neither was possible. Jeffrey's parade was at the National Military Cemetery, and that part was not televised. I did catch a glimpse of the other group from RMC on parade, but not his. Maybe next year. :)

Gary Rith Pottery Blog said...

OMG, your son! Wow.

Dr.John said...

We honor their memory and pray the day will come whewn there will be war no more.

Louise said...

Very nice, very appropriate post. That is wonderful that your son is part of this year's parade.

Jo said...

Oh, gosh, Hilary, what a wonderful post. I watched the ceremonies on CBC this morning.

I pray your son's name will never, ever, ever (!!!) be added to that list. It's too long already.

photowannabe said...

Thanks for googleing the word for me. I believe this is correct.
I'm still thinking about the video. It has stuck with me.

Russell said...

I thought of you and your son several times today... and I join the chorus of voices before me in wishing only the best for you, your family and all the others who serve so we can be free...

Thank you.

womaninawindow said...

Oh, what has to happen to change these things?

david mcmahon said...

Age shall not weary them.

Kat said...

I love that you posted the 97 names. That is awesome. We will never forget.
And Guard Commander? That is awesome!

My dad's nursing home held a ceremony today for all of the veterans who are residents there. My dad is a veteran and he received a plaque with his Army picture on it along with his years of active duty and awards received. All the plaques are then placed on a prominent wall in the nursing home. I wasn't sure how much of it my dad grasped, but he sure was holding on to that plaque tightly. I am so proud.

Thank you our blessed veterans!

Clowncar said...

What a nice gesture, to list the names like that.

We took the girls to the houses of two veterans that live on our block, to thank them for their service. Then the girls called their Grand-Dads and thanked them as well.

It's always such a bittersweet day, isn't it?

TSannie said...

Lovely lovely tribute. Thank you.

steviewren said...

You must be so proud to have a son who serves his country.

Hilary said...

Thanks again, everyone for your wonderful comments.

The posting of the 97 names was mostly Jeffrey's idea. I told him that I had considered doing a video showing the soldiers' faces, names and other info but that from the time it occurred to me, I wouldn't have had enough time to do that and post it for today. He told me that those kinds of tributes really touch the heart of a soldier and I expressed my hope for doing just that for next year, and that hopefully the number would remain at 97.

I had asked Jeffrey to give me a brief outline about what his duties in Ottawa entailed. He did that in a return email, and also included the names and ages of the soldiers as seen in the post.

I also spoke to him tonight, once he was back at RMC in Kingston. He told me that the day's events went off without a hitch, so all of his hard work and planning paid off. He sent me the only photo that he could find of his squadron on parade. Click here to see that.

Thank you all for your touching stories, memories and deeds. You're a great group. :)

Mel said...

This was a great tribute. You must be such a proud mom!

My cousin Christopher might be home, but my prayers didn't stop once he got back. I don't know whether you read my follow-up comment to yours, but I was actually thinking about you and your son as I was writing about my Wish Angel. Your Bridging Generations post was still fresh in my mind.

Off topic - Thank you for your comments over at mine! Dan Fogelberg was kind of great, wasn't he?

Shammickite said...

A very solemn and thoughtful post Hilary.
There were a lot of Stars and Stripes flying here in Florida yesterday (11th) but no poppies... apparently the red poppy is an unknown custom here in the USA. I had my private 2 minutes of silence wile walking along the beach.
97 killed... time they were brought home I think.
I had thought about posting about the servicemen and women who have lost their lives in Afghanistan, but havent done it. I pray that the number stays at 97... no more... but I doubt it will.
Peace.

mlh said...

God bless all service people for their dedication.

Hilary, is it true that in Canada it is a tradition to wear red poppies for those people who are in the service and white poppies in rememberance for those who lost their lives? I heard this somewhere but I cannot remember if it is an actual fact?

CrazyCath said...

I'm late. :(

Poignant post Hilary.

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