Calgary marks 11th annual Peacekeepers' Day
Ceremony marks sacrifices made by Canadian men and women killed while serving
Calgarians celebrated the 11th annual Peacekeepers' Day Sunday with a ceremony in Garrison Green.
Several hundred people came out to the event and listened as the names of Canada's 273 fallen peacekeepers were read aloud. Their names are also etched in a wall at Peacekeeper Park in the southwest neighbourhood.
"It's very humbling and it helps with our grief," said Ben Walsh, whose son, Corp. Jeffery Walsh, was killed in Afghanistan.
The event is focused on the familes of those who have died and aims to make sure their sacrifices are remembered.
Walsh says he comes every year from Regina for the ceremony.
Each year, he brings his son's beret with him. Peacekeepers' Day is one of only two days a year that Walsh wears his son's beret — he also wears it on Remembrance Day.
For other families like the Hornbergs, whose son, Nathan, also died in Afghanistan, Peacekeepers' Day marks a way to remember the bravery of those who serve abroad.
"He knew of the risks and the challenges and he was still willing to go on that mission," said Michael Hornberg, Nathan's father.
"He said more than once, 'if the worst should happen, he had had a really good life,' and he was still willing to go."