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Rememberance Day what it means to me.

November 3rd, 2013 by Mike Arpin

As a young lad growing up near Beauharnois, November was when our Boy Scout Troop practiced marching. Why, because the local Legion Branch always invited us to attend and march along side of the vets to the War Memorial and to participate in the Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Cenotaph.
I don’t ever remember a nice day for the ceremony, everyone seemed to always be cold, dreary, rainy and windy. I especially remember the wind, the bone chilling wind that came across the lake and whipped the many flags, including our own into a frenzy. Even then I was moved emotionally to see the tears and witness the soft sobs of the many Vets gathered in Remembrance. I considered it a privilege to be chosen to lead the Troop carrying our Troops flag or lay a Wreath at the foot of the Cenotaph.The lowering of the flags as the bugler played The Last Post was the most emotional, many Vets and family members that had lost love ones during the conflicts showed their sorrow and pain openly. Even though it effected me then, the real significance and the importance of their sacrifice came later as I matured .

Several ears ago on a visit to France we took a side trip to the Canadian War Memorial at Vimy. During the three hour there we wandered the site visiting the trenches and grave yards, and looked over the fields that still have unexploded munitions I reflected on those past days of my youth at the Cenotaph in Beauharnois. My partner and I hardly spoke the entire visit at the site. When we were there the weather threatened rain all day so we decided to walk the 3 or 4 K back to town to catch the train back to Paris. No sooner that we started the trek The cold gray April skies decided to open and and a soft rain fell all the way back to town. Neither of us complained, neither did we talk, as for myself I was still at the site wandering there with my thoughts.Vimy_Ridge_2011_15
While there at the interpretation center I got a special lapel pin, a Poppy commemorating Vimy. I still have it and I wear it proudly on my lapel.
Today we have a new group of veterans, and while the numbers of soldiers, air men and women, sailors, form WW2 pass on there will always be new ones to remember.

Please buy a Poppy


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