We have long been respectful observers of Remembrance Day. Both our grandfathers were called upon to serve their countries and fortunately for both of us they survived the Second World War carrying with them in silence the deep emotional scars of the experience. Our profound respect for their memory along with those that serve or have served to protect our freedom is felt throughout the year but during the month of November it is felt most deeply.
This year we decided to gather with other observers in Okotoks to honour those men and women who have fought and continue to serve our country. Observance of Remembrance Day in the area has been so well attended in past years that since 2015 it has been held at the Pason Centennial Arena which allows room to seat 2400 people with standing room for an additional 500 more standing. It was heartwarming to attend with so many people for such a relatively small community.
We all collectively stood in silence at 11:00, opened our hearts and remembered. The Last Post was played and there were tears in the eyes of many of those gathered including our own. Those tears seen in the eyes of the aged veterans near the front of the arena were the hardest to witness. To all servicemen and women, active and retired, we thank you from deep in our hearts for your courage and service. For the fallen … you will never be forgotten.
If you did not gather with your community and observe Remembrance Day in 2016, we humbly ask that you gather your families together in 2017 and every year hence. The act of observance itself requires so little from each person, particularly when compared to the ultimate sacrifice so many have made on our behalf. Stand with others and show that their service and sacrifice is deeply appreciated.
“They shall grow not old , as we that are left grow old. Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. At the going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them.”