It takes more than rain to keep Cowichan Valley folks from honouring the fallen.
They came out in good numbers on Saturday morning, Oct. 22, to the Cobble Hill Cenotaph to celebrate the end of the vigil held there to remember Canadian armed forces men and women who have lost their lives while serving within Canada.
The Malahat District Legion, Branch #134, is the only Legion in Canada to hold a special event at the cenotaph to honour these fallen, and they did so, joining those who had held vigil during the night in a memorial service.
The date, Oct. 22, was selected, according to Legion president Wilf Nash, “to signify our respect for those who guard Canada, readily serving on a daily basis in the armed forces. They have given their lives, not in war, or during peacekeeping deployment, but in the inherently dangerous everyday duty of keeping our nation safe and strong.
“Their names are displayed in two volumes within the memorial books at the branch’s main entrance. Volume One lists those who served from the formation of the Canadian Armed Forces on Feb. 1, 1968 to the present. Volume Two includes those who served between 1911 and Feb. 1, 1968.”
The list is already nearly 2,400 names long and is not complete even yet, Nash said.
Prayers, marching in the colours, the laying of a wreath, and the presence of veterans and cadets were all as expected on Remembrance Day. But this showing of respect was for those who died at home.
James Baird, and Brianna Wilson were among those who joined vigil originator Bob Collins on his 29-hour stand at the cenotaph. Both said they felt it was important to set an example in remembering this sort of sacrifice.