One of the best things about living in a new country is that you get to learn new stuff. Canada marks the 102nd Anniversary of the Armistice of the First World War. Here’s everything you need to know about Remembrance Day.
A little bit of a history lesson. On November 11, 1918, the first World War I came to an end after the Allies and Germany signed an armistice calling for a ceasefire of hostilities.
The date and time the armistice took effect on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.
Almost 61,000 Canadians were killed during the war, with 172,000 were wounded.
Even the soldiers who made it back home without injury were not spared. Many Canadian soldiers returned from the war broken in mind and body.
For Canadians, Remembrance Day is an opportunity to recall the brave men and women who served in the defence of their country.
Remembrance Day ceremonies are held across Canada, with those in attendance spending two minutes in silence, followed by the playing of The Last Post and a reading of In Flanders Field.
Remembrance Day is a national holiday for federal and many provincial government workers, but not for those in the private sector.
One of the largest Remembrance Day ceremonies in Canada is at the National War Memorial in Ottawa.
The Prime Minister and members of the Government of Canada are usually in attendance, as are foreign dignitaries and military veterans and their families.
Canadians have been wearing poppies since the 1920s.
The Royal Canadian Legion, Canada’s largest Veteran support and community service organization, conducts the annual Poppy Campaign, which raises funds in support of Veterans and their families.
The Royal Canadian Legion distributed over 18 million poppies last year, raising more than $14 million to help veterans and their families.
You can pick up a Poppy pretty much anywhere in the weeks prior to Remembrance Day, and donations to the Royal Canadian Legion are greatly appreciated.
Immediately after Remembrance Day ceremonies, the public are invited to lay their poppies down.
So please, take a moment and remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice in honour of the country we now call home.
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