November 5th, 2014 ~ Vol. 84 No. 43
Citizens gather at Blairmore Legion to honour fallen soldiers
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Ezra Black Photo
A crowd gathered at the Blairmore Legion last Tuesday to honour Cpl. Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent.
Pass Herald Reporter
On Oct. 28, dozens gathered at the Blairmore Legion to honour two soldiers killed by troubled young men who embraced radical Islam.
Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent was killed on Oct. 20 when he and another officer were struck by a car in the parking lot of a federal building in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que.
Cpl. Nathan Cirillo was gunned down two days later as he stood guard at the National War Memorial in Ottawa in what the prime minister has called a terrorist attack.
“It’s very sad. Especially for such young guys like that and it’s a troubling situation for the country,” said vice-president Reginald Lafreniere “We had a peaceful country and all of a sudden we’ve got to put up with this.”
After laying a wreath at the foot of the cenotaph, the assembled crowd of legion members, citizens, politicians and emergency personnel observed a minute of silence before singing the national anthem.
After paying their respects, the crowd was invited inside the legion to watch Cirillo’s funeral live on television, while it was being held in his home town of Hamilton, ON.
The National Post reported that Cirillo was honoured with a regimental funeral. His coffin was carried to Christ’s Church Cathedral accompanied by members of his regiment, soldiers and police officers.
Cirillo’s five-year old son Marcus followed the procession.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper attended the funeral and is reported to have addressed members of Cirillo’s family directly.
“Our hearts are broken at his loss. But our spirits are grateful for his memory,” he said.
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Bev Megli, Legion secretary treasurer, and her sister Laurie McGladdery went on a last minute shopping trip to provide food and refreshments for the hastily organized event.
Megli said a new letter of appeal has been penned for this year’s poppy campaign, reminding people what the legions are asking for; not just donations but for people to volunteer, get involved and appreciate their freedom.
“You shouldn’t just throw fifty cents in to buy a poppy and then think you’re being patriotic. It’s more than that. Way more,” said Megli. “It’s remembering daily about our freedom and getting involved in the legion.”
Several legion members expressed support for Harper’s decision to join the US-led coalition against the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS).
The CBC reported that Canadian warplanes are operating out of airfields in Kuwait including six CF-18 jet fighters, two CP-140 Aurora surveillance planes and a C-150 refuelling jet. On Nov. 2, CF-18 fighter jets flew their first mission against ISIS, dropping laser-guided bombs at undisclosed targets in the vicinity of the Iraqi city Fallujah.
November 5th ~ Vol. 84 No. 43
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