Aboriginal military veterans are being honoured across Canada, including in Winnipeg, where a remembrance service was held on Thursday.

The National Aboriginal Veterans Day ceremony was held to honour aboriginal veterans and soldiers for the contributions and sacrifices they have made over the years.

Among those who attended the service at Winnipeg's Aboriginal Centre was Joe Meconse of Tadoule Lake, Man., who served in Cypress and Germany.

"To me, it means sacrifice and freedom for all of us," Meconse said.

"We got to remember every day is Veterans Day, because [if] it wasn't for veterans, you wouldn't have any [of] what you got today: freedom and understanding."

Meconse said he loved the army life and was proud to be Canadian when he served overseas.

But he added that aboriginal soldiers were treated poorly by the Canadian government when they came home.

"They condemned us. They put us as second-, third-rated citizens. We were treated worse than dogs. We were not allowed to vote," he said.

Meconse said while National Aboriginal Veterans Day is meant to heal those types of wounds, many veterans are still suffering from the damage done.