One of the main purposes of the Royal Canadian Legion is perpetuating the memory of the sacrifices made by our Armed Forces to restore and maintain Freedom in the world. In World War I, World War II, Korea, Peace Keeping operations and the recent war in Afghanistan more than 117,000 Canadians gave up their young lives. Hundreds of thousands more endured the severe hardships and terrible conditions of the battle fields. They came home with physical and mental scars which would never heal. “Freedom is not free.” We must ever strive ensure that their sacrifices were not in vain and that such major conflicts never happen again.
Remembrance Day is held every November 11, the anniversary of the Armistice ending World War I. Veterans, participants and members of the public meet at the Cenotaph for the service. The Garrison Parade, involving all the local Reserve units and Veterans’ organizations is held on the closest Sunday, to allow those who have to work on the eleventh to participate. Related activities take place through the week. Remembrance Day is dedicated to the memory of those who lost their lives in the service to our country. Of course, in the Royal Canadian Legion, we do not keep Remembrance but one day a year. We keep it all year. Every meeting is opened and closed with a reverent Remembrance ritual. We also hold two church parades, a Decoration Day parades in the cemeteries in June and participate in the parades of our fellow veterans organizations.
“They shall grow not old, as we who 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.”