TORONTO, June 6 /CNW/ - The City of Toronto commemorated the 63rd
anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy with a solemn event at City
Hall's Nathan Phillips Square today. On this date 63 years ago - June 6, 1944
- Canada took part in the D-Day invasion that marked the beginning of the
liberation of France, Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark during the Second
Mayor David Miller welcomed veterans and the public, including many
students, to the event. He concluded his comments about the Battle of Normandy
by officially proclaiming "Toronto Remembers D-Day, June 6, 2007." Mayor
Miller presented the proclamation to D-Day veteran Andrew Irwin, the keynote
speaker. Mr. Irwin, who served as a crew member aboard the HMCS Algonquin ship
on D-Day, spoke to the crowd about his experience at Normandy 63 years ago.
Among the many other veterans participating in the mid-day event were
George Keddy, a D-Day veteran and senior member of the Toronto Civic Honour
Guard, who read the Act of Remembrance after Reveille; Janet Watt, president
of the WREN Association of Toronto; and Leo Leach of the Toronto EMS Honour
Guard. Janet and Leo, accompanied by pianist William O'Hara, sang a selection
of Second World War era songs before the formal ceremony. Members of St.
Michael's Choir School sang "O Canada" and "God Save the Queen". Bugler Nigel
Soper and piper Gary Ford of Toronto Fire Services Pipes and Drums performed
as soloists during the ceremony. Kevin Frankish of Citytv was the master of
Participating honour guards and bands included the Toronto Civic Honour
Guard, Toronto Police Ceremonial Unit, Toronto Firefighters' War Veterans'
Colour Guard, Toronto Emergency Medical Services Honour Guard, Toronto Transit
Commission Supervisory Honour Guard, the Royal Canadian Legion, the Navy,
Army, Air Force Veterans of Canada, the Naval Club of Toronto, the WREN
Association of Toronto and the Toronto Fire Services Pipes and Drums. The
Toronto Mounted Police Unit's Commemorative horses "Juno Beach" and "Vimy
Ridge" were also part of the event.
A D-Day photographic display in the City Hall rotunda can be viewed until
4 p.m. on Friday, June 8. The 2007 D-Day proclamation is available at
Toronto is Canada's largest city, sixth largest government, and home to a
diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of
Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In
the past three years Toronto has won more than 50 awards for quality and
innovation in delivering public services. Toronto's government is dedicated to
prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.
Visit our website at www.toronto.ca
For further information:
For further information: Media contact: Nancy MacSween, Senior Protocol
Officer, City of Toronto, (416) 392-4674