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article imageGuelph's Serious Celebration During Remembrance Day Special

By Bob Gordon     Nov 11, 2009 in Lifestyle
Guelph, Ontario takes Remembrance Day seriously. Today the Sleeman Centre held a crowd of close to 4,000 gathered for the annual Service of Remembrance.
The Guelph Concert Band, with about 35 members, played preludes and postludes as well as accompanying on the hymns. All assembled to participate in the Service of Remembrance
Initially, all the wreaths had to be laid, the colours marched in and guards posted. The 11th Field Regiment, based at the Guelph Armouries, provided the Honour Guard, which entered next.
Prayers were then offered by a Catholic priest, a Protestant minister and a rabbi.
As 11 a.m. approached the hall darkened and a loan bugle played 'Last Post”.
Two minutes silence, in the darkened auditorium, followed. A lone piper playing a lament signalled the hall lights to gradually rise again.
Greetings and “heartfelt thanks” were delivered by Her Worship Mayor Karen Farbridge.
Then Member of Parliament Frank Valeriote spoke: “We all know and are aware that there sacrifice was not in vain.... our duty is to honour the brave men and women who have served our nation in wars past and present.” The conclusion of his short speech was an introduction to the main speaker, Major-General (ret.) John Archibald MacInnis.
Major-General MacInnis served in the Sinai, Cyprus and the Balkans before he retired in 1995. The Major-General focused on the fact that today when we honour veterans we should also “think of the troops in the field today, they are the veterans of tomorrow.”
The Service of Remembrance concluded with the singing of, O Canada,' 'God Save the Queen', and the marching out of the colours.
The entire assemblage accompanied by all the veterans and active duty service people present, march to the Guelph War Memorial where wreaths are laid.
The formal organization, the subsequent March to the Memorial, the presence of a decorated Canadian Major-General as a speaker all mark the Guelph service of remembrance as dintinct.
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