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11 ways to remember on November 11

- November 6, 2013

Lest we forget. (Danny Abriel photo)
Lest we forget. (Danny Abriel photo)

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn [sic]. At the going down of the sun and in the morning
 we will remember them.”
- Excerpt from “For the Fallen” by Laurence Binyon

“Lest We Forget”: A phrase every Canadian knows well, but how often do you take the time to think about what it means?

The first Remembrance Day, initially called Armistice Day, was held not only in Canada but also everywhere in the Commonwealth following the end of the First World War on November 11, 1918.

The eleventh month, eleventh day, and eleventh hour – it’s a tradition that continues today. While most notably associated with both World Wars, Remembrance Day commemorates conflicts from the South African War (1899-1902) onward.

Remembrance Day can be an incredibly personal holiday, especially for those who have family members involved in armed combat. Everyone remembers in a way unique to him or her. While traditional public services are wonderful, there are plenty of other ways to do justice to those who sacrificed so that we can continue to enjoy the rights that define what it means to be Canadian.

Here are 11 ways you can remember this year:

1. Attend the Halifax Grand Parade Remembrance Day ceremony:
Join thousands of fellow Maritimers for Atlantic Canada’s largest Remembrance Day ceremony. The parade route begins at City Hall (1841 Argyle St) at 10:15 a.m. and finishes at Parade Square on the hour (11 a.m.) for the Cenotaph ceremony and Sea King fly-over. The Cenotaph in the middle of Parade Square is dedicated to those who served in both World Wars as well as the Korean conflict. Following the Cenotaph ceremony, a Remembrance Service will be held at the Parish Church.

2. Attend the Remembrance Day ceremony at Point Pleasant Park (Halifax): The ceremony begins at 11 a.m. sharp at the Sailors Monument. The stoic granite monument was erected to honour those serving in the Royal Canadian Navy who lost their lives during the Second World War.

3. Attend Truro’s Remembrance Day ceremony:
For faculty, staff and students on the Agricultural Campus, Truro hosts a ceremony at 11 a.m. at the Cenotaph on Price Street. If there is inclement weather, the shelter from the Truro Farmers’ Market will accommodate veterans.

4. Purchase a poppy from the Royal Canadian Legion:
Wear it above your heart to show your appreciation; all money raised goes to support Canada's veterans. “This single act [wearing a poppy] ensures that our memories of those who died in battle will remain strong.” - Royal Canadian Legion.

5. Make your Facebook profile picture a poppy: This simple gesture can also be very powerful. The poppy represents national unity, and the more poppies people see on Remembrance Day, the more united we are in remembering the memories of those who sacrificed.

6. Visit Pier 21: Visiting the museum is a great way to honour Remembrance Day, as Pier 21 was the point of departure during World War Two. From the Wall of Service to the Story Collection, there are plenty of ways to learn more about Canada’s most valiant here. (You can also dedicate a brick to Pier 21’s Wall of Service.)

7. Observe the Canadian War Museum’s live webcast / minutes of silence: Watch the live stream online and take two minutes of silence. At exactly 12 noon (11 a.m. Eastern), the sun will illuminate the headstone representing Canada’s Unknown Solider through a single window.

8. Take the Remembrance Day challenge: Share your memories, photos, videos, and quotes via social media. For instance…
•    Use the hashtag #showyouremember on Twitter, Facebook, & Instagram.
•    Visit Veterans Affairs Canada Remembers page to share your memories of veterans
•    Create your own Remembrance Day Facebook page for your community
•    Follow Veterans Affairs on Twitter (@VeteransENG_CA)

Wondering where to get content to share? Veterans Affairs has thought of that!
•    Video Gallery
•    Photo Gallery

9. Experience Citadel Hill: Honour our veterans at one of Halifax's most popular historic sites, Citadel Hill. Experience a 21-gun salute by the Canadian Forces Reserve 1st Field Artillery at the main gate at 11 a.m. sharp. The Army Museum will also be open to visitors from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

10. Check out the Royal Canadian Legion’s Virtual Wall of Remembrance or the Canadian Virtual Wall Memorial: Watch the virtual wall online or submit a photo of a veteran you would like to have honoured. Photos will be featured in the slideshow at both the National War Memorial and Remembrance Day Ceremony in Ottawa. You can also search or submit profiles of Canada’s war dead on Veterans Affairs' Virtual Wall Memorial.

11. Participate in the Canada-wide #SilenceToRemember on social media: Bring your moment of silence online. Canada Remembers is encouraging individuals to avoid social media activity for 11 minutes starting at 11:01 a.m. That means no tweeting, Facebooking, YouTube watching, Snapchatting, or Instagraming until 11:12 am.

For more on Remembrance Day, visit the Veterans Affairs Canada website.


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