On the 11th day of the 11th month at the 11th hour, Canadian mouths were silent to remember the soldiers who fought for our freedom.
Thousands of people crowded the streets of Wellington and Dufferin just to get a glimpse of the men and women who served our country to the fullest.
When the veterans arrived, Londoners welcomed them with thunderous applause.
The entire park fell completely silent at 11 AM for the moment of silence. After this, The Last Post was played, followed by the national anthem.
Many wreaths were laid at the base of the cenotaph in support of the troops and for all those who were killed. London Mayor Matt Brown helped lay a wreath at the cenotaph with Police Chief John Pare on behalf of all Londoners.
Brown says that he was at the ceremony remembering his grandfather, “My grandfather, John Brown, served as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Queen’s Own Rifles during World War II. He spent most of his time in Holland during liberation. He never spoke about his experiences while serving; they were very difficult for him. But one message that he drove home to all twelve of his grandchildren, even when we were very young, was that when you see veterans you say ‘thank you’.”
“Twenty years ago we didn’t see numbers like this and I’m not sure why,” Mayor Matt Brown added.
“It is such a powerful feeling to see thousands and thousands of Londoners who have come down to recognize this day.”
Local veteran, Philip Cockburn, joined the force in 1940 and says that he came out to support his friend who was lost in battle, “I have another friend of mine the same age, and I haven’t seen him any more.”
Ray Bourman served in the Royal Canadian Navy ever since he was 15-years old, where he served on a Norwegian ship. He says that he went to the ceremony for his military family, “I just lost a brother, who was Royal Canadian Army Services Corp. he was 95. I have another brother in the hospital now, another brother who served 27 years in the air force, but he’s not doing too well.”
Remembrance Day is not a statutory holiday in much of Canada. Banks, post offices, and government offices are still closed to mark the day so employees can remember.