Lest we forget: remembering the fallen from the community

Wainfleet gathered to honour their citizens who have served Canada in the past, present and future Saturday Nov. 11/2017.

Ceremonies were held across Niagara Saturday Nov. 11/2017 honouring Canadians who have served our country in the past and in the present as well as in the future.

In Wainfleet Township the ceremony at the Cenotaph was well attended, the citizens of Wainfleet showed overwhelming support.

Families came together to remember those from the township whose sacrifice will never be forgotten.

“Since I’ve been elected to public office, with each passing year, I have come to understand more and more the importance of honouring those who have fought, suffered and died for our freedom,” Wainfleet Township Mayor April Jeffs said during the ceremony.

“I discuss with my children to make sure they understand, most of us haven’t had to watch someone go off to war,” she said. “For most of us the only frame of reference we have are our grandparents or great grandparents.”

She told the crowd about her grandfather.

“There is a picture of my grandfather taken in Port Colborne in January of 1941, smiling and full of pride in his Navy uniform, he just turned 18 and couldn’t wait to deploy and do his part,” she said.

In October 1944 his ship sank off the coast of Iceland during a storm. Her grandfather survived, 15 members of the crew perished in the frigid waters.

His story similar to many others, eager to serve and do their part, coming back changed forever by what they have had to endure.

“My grandfather never liked to talk much about his time overseas,” she said.

Honouring the people who are serving now and in the future is important to the Township of Wainfleet.

In an act of remembrance after the ceremony people placed their poppies on a cross standing beside the Cenotaph.

“Last year a family friend’s son announced he was joining the army,” Mayor Jeffs said. “While they are extremely proud, there was a feeling of desolation as well, a feeling that happiness and pride could end in a single moment in a land far away from here.”

“We are people of peace, respect and compassion,” she said. “Canada has shown through two World Wars, Korea, the Cold War and in Afghanistan that these qualities are not negotiable. We stand for them throughout the world and here at home.”

The ceremony in Wainfleet was enhanced by the participation of the choirs of William E. Brown Public School and St. Elizabeth Catholic Elementary School who performed “Highway of Heroes” and “A Place to Stand (Ontario’s theme song).”

After the wreaths were laid, people were invited to place their poppies on a wooden cross that stood beside the Cenotaph.

 

 

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