Importance of poppy remembered at ceremony

About 50 people gathered outside at the cenotaph at the McLennan Legion for a brief Remembrance Day ceremony Nov. 11. A banner also recognizes the centennial of the poppy.

Richard Froese
South Peace News

People gathered outside for brief Remembrance Day ceremonies Nov. 11 in McLennan and other neighbouring communities in the Smoky River Region.
Weather was sunny and cool as about 50 people gathered at the cenotaph outside the McLennan Legion.
Vice-president Terry Dunne led the 15-minute ceremony where the centennial of the poppy was recognized.
“It has been a symbol of remembrance first for those who lost their lives in the First World War and those who returned with disabilities,” Dunne says.
“Since then, it has remained a symbol or remembrance for those who have served and those who have not returned home from service.”
He also noted the last Smoky River region Veteran of the Second World War passed away in 2021.
“Because we are losing the living history of the Second World War, it is more important now to remember those people and their sacrifices,” Dunne says.
Similar to last year, outdoor ceremonies were also held in Falher at Centre Chevaliers, in Donnelly at the Societe Historique de Smoky River and at the Village of Girouxville office.
Ceremonies were held outside as indoor gatherings during Remembrance Day were prohibited under restrictions in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Before the pandemic gathering restrictions, a regional Remembrance Day service was held in McLennan in the Elks and Royal Purple Community Hall that draws a crowd of more than 200 people.
“We hope we can all be back at the hall next year,” Dunne says.

McLennan RCMP Sgt. Scott Ritchie salutes as he stands at the cenotaph at the McLennan Legion during a brief Remembrance Day ceremony Nov. 11.

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