Victory Square 2020: We Will Remember

This year, on November 11, 2020, Remembrance Day in Vancouver was held virtually.  Instead of the 20,000 people gathered at the cenotaph at Vancouver’s Victory Square,  the ceremony was limited to 50 people. We were encouraged to watch livestreams and online broadcasts from our homes.  Throughout the ceremony, there was a sense of purpose and determination to give honour to those who served in the past as well as in the present.  In this time of uncertainty, the spirit of courage, of hope and resilience continues to be ever present.

“The Victory Square ceremony is the second largest in Canada, after the national ceremony in Ottawa. It’s located within a small park featuring a 30-foot-tall cenotaph near the southeast corner of Hastings and Cambie streets. The site was originally home to a courthouse; in the First World War the space was home to Vancouver’s Victory Bond drive, so when the cenotaph was located there it was dubbed Victory Square.” Vancouver Sun

My father was a WWII war veteran.  Today, I remember him, and all who served,  by reading “In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae, from the book of poetry that he gave to me several years ago

In Flanders Fields

by John McCrae

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
    That mark our place; and in the sky
    The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
    Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
        In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
    The torch; be yours to hold it high.
    If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
        In Flanders fields.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: 
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

Laurence Binyon

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