Every year on November 11th, Canada and every other country in the Commonwealth remember the members of their armed forces who fought and died in World War I. It is on this exact date as in 1918 “on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month” all hostilities formally ended after four long years. WWI then officially ended on June 28th 1919 with the Treaty of Versailles in Paris, France.
This is of course not supposed to be a history lesson for you, but rather a hint to think about our ancestors who maybe even suffered or took part in a war themselves. My granddad fought in WWII as a German soldier on the French frontier and I will never forget his vivid stories about the war and my grandma’s narrations on how she gave shelter and food to refugees and at the same time didn’t know if her husband and brothers would ever return. We are blessed to be living in a peaceful part of the world right now and not having to worry about our own and our families’ safety. We see war as a phenomenon on television and get only kind of emotionally close to it when we find old pictures or diaries in the attic. Still, others are right there in this very second and “the war”, wherever it is, is part of their lives – I’m talking about soldiers, journalists and all innocent civilians living in operational zones. They deserve our respect too.
Canadians express their respect by wearing red poppy pins, which I think is a lovely gesture. Are you wearing one too? Either way, stop what you’re doing for a minute and develop your own thoughts on the topic. Take a minute and remember.
Lest we forget.