OTTAWA, Nov. 11, 2018 /CNW/ - The Honourable Seamus O'Regan, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defence, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defence, and the Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, issued the following statement today, on the occasion of Remembrance Day and the centennial of the Armistice that ended the First World War:
"This year, as we mark Remembrance Day, we also mark the 100th anniversary of the First World War Armistice. Each year, on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, we gather to honour and remember the generations of Canadians who have made countless sacrifices to protect our freedom.
"In the three months leading up to the end of the war, a period known as Canada's Hundred Days, our soldiers recorded a series of impressive victories that solidified their reputation as elite shock troops. Thirty Canadians and Newfoundlanders earned the Victoria Cross during this time for their heroic efforts in the defence of peace and freedom.
"At sundown today, the bells in Ottawa's Peace Tower and in communities across Canada will ring, as will those in Mons, Belgium, the final town liberated by the Canadian Corps during the First World War. As they first did 100 years ago, these bells will ring to celebrate the end of the First World War, as a symbol of the peace and joy the Armistice brought to Western Europe and the world.
"As well as the 100th anniversary of Canada's Hundred Days and the Armistice, 2018 marks the 65th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice, the 10th anniversary of National Peacekeepers' Day, and the 75th anniversary of the invasion of Sicily and the beginning of the Italian Campaign in the Second World War.
"On Remembrance Day, we stand solemnly together to extend our unending gratitude for all those who gave their lives, and show our respect to Veterans, members of the Canadian Armed Forces and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, and others, who have served in the cause of peace and freedom.
"Today, as you stand at cenotaphs and memorials across the country, we ask that you take a moment to reflect on the incredible sacrifices made by those who have served our country and the families who have supported them. Their bravery and selflessness allow us to live the way we do today: strong and free.
"Lest we forget."
SOURCE Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information: Media Relations, Veterans Affairs Canada, 613-992-7468, [email protected]; Alex Wellstead, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs, [email protected]; Media Relations, Department of National Defence, 613-996-2353, [email protected]; Byrne Furlong, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of National Defence, 613-996-3100, [email protected]; Scott Bardsley, Senior Advisor for Communications, Office of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, 613-998-5681, [email protected]; Media Relations, Public Safety Canada, 613-991-0657, [email protected]