Hundreds of people gathered on a bitter, cold Saturday morning to pay their respects at a Remembrance Day ceremony at the Cross of Sacrifice in Kingston. The memorial has been standing tall since 1925, honouring those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.
Among the hundreds in attendance this year were local dignitaries as well as veteran and military groups.
“There’s no question that we are a proud, military town,” said Kingston Mayor Bryan Paterson. “It’s amazing year after year, no matter the weather, how many people will come out, take time out of their day to pay their respects and it really is a point of pride for our city.”
Men and women both young and old, along with families, stood in solidarity with veterans as wreaths were laid in remembrance.
“It’s always really good to see younger people as opposed to just old folks showing up. I think it’s very important for all Canadians to take a moment on the 11th and remember those that have gone before us,” said veteran Stu MacAulay.
Remembrance Day means different things to different people. Commander with the Naval Reserve, Susan Long-Poucher, reflected on the past. “I don’t have close relatives but I did have some relatives that passed away in both First and Second World Wars so I think of the stories of them and all the people that continue to serve as well.”
Kingston and the Islands MPP Sophie Kiwala thinks of the families left behind. “Every single day, service men and women have gone to be posted somewhere else in the world, in a place of conflict. Their families are left to fend for themselves without that camaraderie, without that partner who’s there in the home.”
And even though the cenotaph was originally erected for those who perished in the First World War, it now serves as a symbol for all of Kingston’s fallen men and women who sacrificed their lives for their country.