PEI

Amid smaller Charlottetown Remembrance Day ceremony, MC highlights other ways to pay respects

The Remembrance Day event at the Charlottetown cenotaph Wednesday was smaller than usual due to COVID-19. Even though large public gatherings are not permitted, Maj. Rev. Tom Hamilton said there are still ways to remember.

'We can still go to a local cemetery and place a poppy or wreath on the grave of a veteran'

While gatherings are limited due to COVID-19, Maj. Rev. Tom Hamilton suggested Islanders find different ways to show their respect for veterans, like calling one and thanking them for their service. (Shane Hennessey/CBC)

The Remembrance Day event at the Charlottetown cenotaph Wednesday was smaller than usual due to COVID-19.

Typically, hundreds of people flock to the end of Great George Street on Nov. 11 to remember Canadian veterans who fought in various conflicts around the world, but several areas, including Charlottetown, had to come up with other plans for remembrance during the global pandemic.

However, it wasn't the first time Canadians had to deal with a pandemic.

"One hundred years ago as soldiers returned from the First World War, many of them faced a new enemy in the form of the Spanish flu pandemic," said Maj. Rev. Tom Hamilton, the master of ceremonies.

"Friends and neighbours were separated from each other. Yet, they were united in their resolve to remember the sacrifices made during the First World War."

Members of the public still had the opportunity to pin their poppy to a wreath at the Charlottetown cenotaph. (Shane Hennessey/CBC)

Even though large public gatherings are not permitted, Hamilton said there are still ways to remember.

"We can still call a veteran and thank them for their service," he said. "We can still go to a local cemetery and place a poppy or wreath on the grave of a veteran."

Hamilton said he hopes other Remembrance Day traditions that were cancelled due to the pandemic will take place next year.

Lt. Rory O'Donnell, performed the Last Post before a two-minute silence at 11 a.m. AT. Rev. Paula Hamilton delivered prayers.

Poppies and painted rocks were left at the base of the Charlottetown cenotaph Wednesday to honour veterans. (Shane Hennessey/CBC)

Charlottetown MP Sean Casey, MLA Natalie Jameson and Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown laid wreaths on behalf of various levels of government.

Steven Harris, assistant deputy minister of strategic oversight and planning, laid a wreath on behalf of Veterans Affairs Canada. Wreaths were also laid representing the Canadian Armed Forces, the provincial command and the Royal Canadian Legion.

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