Salute to Veterans commemorates 100 years since start of First World War

In June, 1914 the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo went almost unnoticed in Canada.

That would soon change when the European nations of Austria-Hungary, Serbia, Russia and Germany, along with the Ottomon Empire (Turkey), started declaring war against one another. On Aug. 2, when Germany declared war on France, Britain took its stand against the Germans two days later, and the First World War officially began.

Because of its ties with Britain, Canada immediately began supplying troops for overseas service.

According to Veteran Affairs Canada, Canadians greeted the outbreak of war with enthusiasm, especially those born in the British Isles who volunteered in large numbers.

In the trenches and muddy battlefields, Canadian troops fought bravely in the third Battle of Ypres and at Passchendaele and joined the allies in arguably the most famous battle of them all, Vimy Ridge.

To commemorate the centennial of the outbreak of the First World War, a special Salute to Veterans is being planned for the upcoming Okanagan Military Tattoo at Vernon’s Kal Tire Place Aug. 1 and 2.

“The tribute is to honour those who made the ultimate sacrifice and those who have dedicated their lives to the defence and security of their country, in war and in peace,” said Norm Crerar, tattoo producer.

“Traditionally, tattoos have provided an opportunity for civilians to witness the precision and professionalism of the military. The Okanagan Military Tattoo is no exception.”

Headliners such as the RCMP “E” Division Pipe Band, the Calgary Stampede Band of Outriders and the Royal Canadian Artillery Band will help draw the crowds, but organizers say they feel the most poignant, emotional and memorable part of the two-hour program will be dedication to recognize and pay tribute to Canada’s veterans.

The Okanagan Military Tattoo is the only military-style tattoo in Western Canada. Specially priced tickets for veterans, as well adult, senior, student and family rates are available at the Ticket Seller at www.ticketseller.ca or call 250-549-7469. All seating is reserved.

For more information, visit www.okanagantattoo.ca.


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