Remembrance Day has always been important to my family. My father was a reservist (as pictured above) and my grandfather was in the air force. Because of their strong military background and the relationships made during their times of service, my family has always considered Remembrance Day as one of the more important days of the year. Not only do we pay our respects on November 11 each year, we have also placed a wreath at our local cenotaph for 20 years now (that’s every year that I have been alive). In fact, this photo graced the front of my local newspaper the day after Remembrance Day the year I was born (yes that baby is me).
Being involved on Remembrance Day has given me the opportunity to better understand and appreciate everything that those before me have gone through in order for me to live how I do today. It has also given me the opportunity to form relationships that will last for a lifetime. For example, I have a friend who I see every year, I like to call him “my favorite Mountie” but really, his name is Kevin.
Kevin plays the trumpet during the ceremonies. He also shared an opinion with me that I have felt a deep connection to. The Last Post , which is the bugle call that marks the end of the day’s activities, ends on a note that doesn’t really “close” the song off; in fact it sounds like there is more to come. Kevin has stipulated that this is because it relates to a line from the famous poem In Flanders Fields written by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae which states:
The torch: be yours to hold it high
What this means is that the song does not truly end and that there is more to come. The “more to come” will be the responsibility of those who are able to take the torch next, which most likely is those of generations to come.
Kevin’s analysis made me realize that no matter how things currently are, there will always be more to come. Even if I am not going to be fighting on the battlefield, I still need to find my way to step up and take the torch somehow. For now, that means honouring veterans, those who have lost their lives and those who will.