14 May 14

Remembrance

It is A Pittance of Time, at least that is what Terry Kelly, singer/songwriter named his song  in 2003, just a  mere two years after the War on Terrorism began for Canada. It is a song meant to remind us that it only takes a minute to remember and to respect those who lost their lives, and not just in World Wars, but in all battles. Whether it be the physical fight away or the personal fight at home.
With undoubtedly good intentions but perhaps poor timing, Prime Minister Harper declared May 9 a National Day of Honour in recognition of Canada’s military mission in Afghanistan, only a month after the last of the troops came home. It barely gave Ottawa time to prepare the big ceremony, let alone those communities across the nation to organize commemorative ceremonies; for example did the caretakers of our Legions and monuments have enough time to properly prepare and stage local ceremonies honouring this latest generation of combat veterans who engaged in a shooting war as their country met its international obligations. And those are the veterans. One hundred and fifty-eight Canadian soldiers also paid the supreme sacrifice in the recently concluded mission.
North Dundas District High School, it must be noted, did observe a moment’s silence on the Day.
Regardless of the degree to which the mission filtered out of Ottawa and into the hinterland, Canadians will not soon forget the sacrifice made by the soldiers in their battle of greater good.
In Chesterville, this also opens up the opportunity, finally, to engrave the names of local veterans of the Afghan mission on this village’s handsome veterans’ monument.
Pamela J Pearson