Every year on November 11, Canada, other Commonwealth countries, and many other places around the world observe Remembrance Day, also known as Armistice Day. This special holiday’s purpose is to remember and commemorate those who died serving in WWI and WWII, and later, those who served and continue to serve in military service and during wartime. Remembrance Day marks the anniversary of the day WWI ended and the signing of the Treaty of Versailles by Germany and the Allied Nations. Ceremonies of differing scales are held across the nation, many of which the attendees would wear red poppies over their hearts. Two minutes of silence are also usually observed at the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour. Readings of famous poems like John McCrae’s In Flanders Fields and performances of bugle calls Last Post followed by Reveille are often part of these ceremonies too.
Heritage Woods’ Remembrance Day assembly took place on November 8th, 2019. The solemn event opened with the entrance of cadets, honoured guests, and speakers, while the HWSS Senior Concert Band played The Maple Leaf Forever. Afterwards, they accompanied as Berry Yan and Adan Auyeung beautifully sang Heather Davis’ To Our Canadian Troops. Guest speaker Captain Nowell shared personal stories from her life, often moving around and seeing many parts of the world as she was raised by parents who served. She also did an activity with the audience which made her story particularly engaging. The Eagle Mountain Middle Choir joined the HWSS Concert Choir in their performance of Antiphonal Kyrie by Cristi Cary Miller. Readings of poems by some of Mr. Bell’s English students followed. The HWSS Chamber Strings presented Gabriel’s Oboe arranged by Robert Longfield, featuring John Zhang on the violin and accompanied by students from the Dance classes.
A student who wishes to stay anonymous comments that they “enjoyed the choir and strings performances. The [featured violinist] was really good. To me, it was the most memorable part of the assembly.” Francesca Lepore then spoke about her experiences in travelling to memorials at significant WWI locations and how inspirational and moving the trip was for her. After, Lamby Wu played Last Post and Reveille as everyone held a moment of silence for the fallen men and women who served. The assembly came to an end as the cadets, honoured guests, and speakers left the gym while the Senior Concert Band played The Maple Leaf Forever.
Written by Erica Hui