At the eleventh hour of 11 November 1918, World War I drew to a final close with Germany’s signing of the armistice agreement. Ever since November 11 has been recognized as Remembrance Day–a day to commemorate and honor those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for the peace and freedom that Canadians enjoy today.
On 11 November 2020, MGCI held a Remembrance Day observance over the PA system. The program began with the playing of the national anthem, followed by a reading of John McCrae’s “In Flanders Fields.” The tribute proceeded to highlight the sacrifices of black and indigenous individuals and the discrimination that they faced before and after their service. After a playing of the bugle call “The Last Post,” two minutes of silence were observed by staff and students at 11 am. The observance concluded with the bugle call of “Rouse.” A recording of the tribute has been posted on Facebook and Instagram by the Student Activity Council (SAC).
Students and staff of Garneau also honoured fallen troops by wearing poppies, which were distributed to classes in the morning. Poppies have traditionally been worn during the Remembrance period because they are the flowers which grew on the battlefields of Flanders, Belgium after World War I. Since no donations could be collected this year to support the Canadian veterans and their families due to the complications from COVID-19, MGCI itself arranged a donation on behalf of the students.
When asked about the significance of Remembrance Day, student Ryan Chang, who helped organize the observance, said, “We’re all extremely fortunate to be living in a country and time of peace, and oftentimes we forget that peace comes at a price. Even if we don’t have a personal connection to war, it’s only right that we take the time to properly honour and respect the selfless actions of our veterans and active forces for their service to our country.”
Remembrance Day is a day of honour and recollection for those who fought and died in the line of duty. On this day, millions around the world share feelings of gratitude and respect for those who served and continue to serve their country. The sacrifices of these courageous soldiers lay in our collective national consciousness. Lest we forget.