Remembrance Day is a national day of remembrance that commemorates the end of the First World War and honours the members of the armed forces who died in the line of duty. It is observed on November 11 every year, the anniversary of the armistice that ended the war in 1918.
On this day, Canadians across the country pause in a moment of silence at 11 a.m. to remember the more than 118,000 Canadians who have died in military service since 1914. They also wear poppies, a symbol of remembrance inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields” by Canadian Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, who served as a surgeon in the war.
Remembrance Day ceremonies are held at cenotaphs and war memorials, where wreaths are laid and prayers are said. The largest and most attended ceremony is held at the National War Memorial in Ottawa, where the Governor General, the Prime Minister, and other dignitaries pay their respects. The ceremony is broadcasted live on television and radio, and features a flypast by the Royal Canadian Air Force and a 21-gun salute.
This date it is not only a day to mourn the dead, but also to honour the living. It is a day to recognize and thank the veterans and active members of the Canadian Armed Forces for their service and sacrifice. It is also a day to reflect on the values of peace, democracy, and human rights that they fought to defend.
November 11 is more than just a date on the calendar. It is a solemn occasion that reminds us of our past, our present, and our future. It is a day to remember those who gave their lives for our freedom, and to pledge to never forget them.