Despite the rainy weather, a large crowd of people made their way to the B.C. legislature in Victoria on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2023, to participate and watch the province’s Remembrance Day ceremony this year.
Veterans, current members serving, politicians, and family laid wreaths at the Victoria Cenotaph, which honours the sacrifices made by Canadian soldiers in both world wars, the Korean war, and other peacekeeping missions.
Hundreds marched down Government and Belleville streets, with chants and salutes to pay their respects.
“It makes me feel good, it makes me feel that I have served my country well,” said Major (Ret’d) Gerry Ratchford.
Ratchford served for 40 years in the Canadian Armed Forces, earning more than a dozen medals. He served in Cyrpus and Korea and currently works security at CFB Esquimalt. The 95-year-old veteran says seeing the overwhelming support is touching.
“We need your support, like we always have…. whether that be overseas or here in Canada,” said Ratchford.
Retired Cpl. Tavin Shamess joined the CAF when he was 16-years-old, and now at 25, he looks back at his time serving with a sense of accomplishment.
“I look back at a lot of the experiences and, you kno,w in the moment they were hard but I cherish them a lot,” said Shamess.
CHEK will also air two documentaries that share a local and historical perspective on the First and Second World War on Saturday evening.
At 8 p.m., CHEK will air the Ways We Remember War, a 70-minute documentary focusing on the 2nd Battle of Ypres, which was the first involvement of Canadian troops in the First World War.
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Then at 9:30 p.m., the documentary Abkhazi Garden: Sanctuary from War will air. It details Peggy and Nicolas Abkhazi’s stories of being caught up in the war and coming to Victoria to live the remainder of their lives.