OTTAWA – Crowds of people have filled the square at Halifax’s Grand Parade to mark 100 years since the signing of the armistice that ended the First World War.
As the clock struck 11 a.m., the gun on nearby Citadel Hill fired the first of 22 shots.
The somber crowd stood in near-silence as it reflected on the battles that ended a century ago, and those that have come since.
The Halifax gathering is one of many across the country, including the national ceremony in Ottawa which will be attended by Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan in place of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
#CFBHalifax Base Commander Capt(N) Mazur and Base Chief CPO1 Gregory attend a Remembrance Day ceremony at the Korean War Memorial in Clayton Park on November 11. #RememberThem #CanadaRemembers pic.twitter.com/aTK6zadBlH
— CFB Halifax (@CFBHalifax) November 11, 2018
Trudeau was away in Paris, but his wife, Sophie, attended. This year has special significance, marking the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War. Head Chaplain of the Armed Forces, Major General Guy Chapdelaine, marked the occasion.
“On the centennial of the signing of the armistice, we honour those whose names we know and those whose names are known to God alone,” Chapdelaine said
Governor General Julie Payette will attend the national ceremony alongside Sajjan, after returning from Belgium where she attended additional commemorative events.
I was honoured to represent the Government of Canada during the Remembrance Day ceremony at the War Memorial today. A fitting tribute to the thousands who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. #CanadaRemembers pic.twitter.com/WbwGnW85lV
— Harjit Sajjan (@HarjitSajjan) November 11, 2018
Hundreds of people assembled at the national war memorial in the capital today in sunshine, but chilly temperatures, to honour Canada’s war dead and veterans.
Canada’s top soldier, General Jonathan Vance says this Remembrance Day is an opportunity to remind people of the sacrifices of service people, past and present.
“The war to end all wars didn’t, and conflict continues to this day and we stand as an armed forces ready to do what we have to do for the country,” the general said.
An honour to attend the National Remembrance Day Ceremony today at the Cenotaph and lay a wreath on behalf of the City of Ottawa pic.twitter.com/0PXOn7lxbL
— Jim Watson (@JimWatsonOttawa) November 11, 2018
They paused at 11 a.m. to reflect on the sacrifices of Canadian men and women who have given their lives in conflicts around the world.
The ceremony includes a 21-gun salute as well as a flyover of five C-F-18 Hornet aircraft from Cold Lake, Alberta, flying in a “missing man” formation.
— RoyalCanadianLegion (@RoyalCdnLegion) November 11, 2018
It’s one of dozens of ceremonies being held across the country.