By Joel Charron

On a cold and windy day, veterans, local dignitaries and the public gathered at the cenotaph to pay tribute to soldiers who fought and continue to fight for Canada.

The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 157 held their annual Remembrance Day ceremony on Friday, Nov. 11.

The ceremony began with the Legion leading veterans and dignitaries on parade to the cenotaph.

The General Amherst high School band was on hand to give their rendition of both the American and Canadian national anthems. The names of Amhersrtburg’s fallen soldiers who fought in World War I , World War II and the Korean War were read.

Greetings were also brought from the dignitaries in attendance.


SSM Andrew Kelly and RSM Miranda Turner of the #202 Fort Malden Army Cadet Corps pay their respects to fallen soliders after they lay down a wreath in remembrance.

Sarah Watson, wife of Essex MP Jeff Watson, represented Jeff and the federal government as Jeff was at a similar ceremony in Comber.

Watson gave praise to the #202 Fort Malden Army Cadet Corps, stating to the members of the Cadet Corps “it’s very clear you have taken up the torch.”

Watson also read a statement from Prime Minster Stephen Harper, in which Harper commended and thanked veterans for ensuring Canada enjoys freedom, democracy and the rule of law.

“Canadian have always stood ready to defend their country and in the last century, nearly two million have served in the two world wars, Korea, Afghanistan, Libya and various other zones,” she read. “Sadly, we also remember those who in doing so paid the ultimate price with their lives.”

“The values that our veterans held dearly decades ago are still very much alive today in those who continue to serve our great country,” she continued. “Being at home or abroad, through peace or combat missions the unparallel spirit still evokes devotion of the Canadian Armed Forces and is an example for us all and our thought remain with those currently serving in Afghanistan.”

Merv Richards, representing Essex MPP Taras Natyshak it was a day to remember those who served Canada during the times of war, conflict and peace.

“We dedicate our thoughts to those who made the ultimate sacrifice to allow us to live in a free, democratic, peaceful country,” he said. “We honour the valour of those who suffered physical or psychological injuries in the course of duty including the many who carry the scars of battle today.”

Natyshak encouraged people to learn more about our veterans and never forget their contributions.

“They are our relatives, neighbours and friends from all walks of life,” read Richards.

Mayor Wayne Hurst said he was pleased with the excellent turnout, stating Amherstburg always has a good turnout for Remembrance Day.

“It speaks volumes as to who we are as Canadians,” he said.

Hurst encourages the public to remember the fallen, thank the veterans and say a prayer for those still serving.

“They have served with dignity and distinction,” said Hurst.

Hurst called on the federal government to do more for veterans, which includes an increasing access to health care and adequate housing for veterans.

“They stood on guard for us and we must stand on guard for them,’ stated Hurst.

Legion Br. 157 president Dennis Purdie thanked the public for braving the cold and thanked the cadets who stood on guard at the centograph all night.

“We must continue to remember those who served and those who continue to serve Canada, so we can all appreciate the standard of living we have in this country,” said Purdie.



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