Moments from the March: Ottawa women cheer from hair salon, 94-year-old says 'get on with it'

Thousands took part in the Women's March in Ottawa — with similar protests in major Canadian cities all to support a rally in Washington, D.C. following the inauguration of Donald Trump as U.S. president.

Ottawa police estimate between 6,000 and 8,000 people took part in Saturday's rally

Thousands marched through downtown Ottawa in solidarity with the Women's March in Washington. 0:48

Thousands of people marched through downtown Ottawa on Saturday in solidarity with the Women's March on Washington — to raise awareness for women's rights and human rights — as U.S. President Donald Trump marks his first full day in office.

The march began at the Human Rights Monument outside City Hall, and finished about 2 km away with an indoor rally at the Bronson Centre.

The crowd was between 6,000 and 8,000 people, according to Ottawa police.

Elsa Lessard, 94, said she was determined to attend the rally — and mad that she's had to protest the same issues for decades. 

"We're fighting this fight since the '60s. Get on with it," Lessard told CBC News, prompting a cheer from surrounding crowd members.

Support along route

As the marchers made their way down Laurier Avenue, many people waiting in cars at intersections honked their horns or got out of their cars to cheer on the crowd.

Women inside a hair salon on Laurier Ave. stood at the window and watched as the crowd marched by. (Hillary Johnstone/CBC News)

Some women in the midst of getting their hair done at a salon on Laurier Avenue waved from the window, with tears rolling down their cheeks.

Chrystal Lotz, 34, says she's "grateful" for all the people who turned out on a Saturday for the march. (Hillary Johnstone/CBC News)

"It's a really emotional thing to see so many women, and especially so many men, out here supporting women … and minorities and everything that we're going through," said a tearful Chrystal Lotz, 34, who works at the Hair Junkie salon.


Rodney Mockler, who was at the rally with his husband, said being part of the crowd made him feel "connected, connected, connected."

Rodney Mockler (L) and his husband attended the march on Saturday. (Hillary Johnstone/CBC News)

"We're one. It's about time we realized, we're connected as one," said Mockler. "And I think the major message is 'no division,' and what Donald Trump has done has divided his country — not in two, but in 50 ways."

Alternative to 'sitting around'

For some, Saturday's march was the first time they'd ever felt compelled to attend a protest.

"This is actually the first time I've come out to something like this," said Kabriya Coghlan, 23.

Kabriya Coghlan, 23, said Saturday's march was the first time she's ever attended a protest. (Hillary Johnstone, CBC News)

"I've just been really unhappy about the way things have been in the world, and the election in the U.S., and everything. And I kind of figured instead of sitting around, like ranting about it to people, I could come out and be with people that feel the same way, and take steps towards making it better," said Coghlan.

The crowd made its way from the Human Rights Memorial outside City Hall, to the Bronson Centre. (Hillary Johnstone/CBC News)