Candlelight tribute honours military fallen


May 29 the people of Vancouver Island are invited to God’s Acre Cemetery in Esquimalt for a candlelight  tribute to honour the service and sacrifice of Canada’s armed forces.
The Candlelight Tribute, which takes place every year, honours fallen military members and the sacrifices of military personnel throughout history. This year a special focus will be given to the 70th anniversary of the D-Day Landing.

“We want to pass on the torch,” says Bob Haldane, Vice President of the Esquimalt Legion, which hosts the event. “It’s important for kids to remember the people who came before them, who fought for everything they have now.

“With this special anniversary, it’s especially important to remember the events through history which contributed to the sacrifices of these men and women.”

Every year the event hosts guest speakers, musical acts, and presentations. The Victoria Children’s Choir will be in attendance this year performing “How Can I Keep From Singing”, “A Song for Peace”, and the popular Second World War ballad “(There’ll Be Bluebirds Over) The White Cliffs of Dover”.

“Getting so many generations in one place to remember the efforts and values of the past is really the goal,” says Haldane. “We have to open our hearts and our minds and remember the values that all humanity shares in our pursuit of peace, safety, and happiness.”

Guests of honour include members of the Army, Air Force, Navy, and Merchant Navy, Peacekeepers, and veterans of the Second World War and the Korean War. Mayor Barb Desjardins will also be in attendance as well as Capt(N) Luc Cassivi, Base Commander of CFB Esquimalt, and Cmdre Bob Auchterlonie, Commander Canadian Fleet Pacific.

Following the presentations, those in attendance may place candles on the gravesites at God’s Acre. Last year over 1,000 candles were placed by the 1,000 people in attendance, and Haldane expects many more this years.

“The event gets more and more popular each year,” he says. “We plan on placing around 3,000 candles at least this year.”

For more info on the event contact Bob Haldane: 250-474-3666 or the Esquimalt Legion: 250-386-7625.


Shawn O’Hara, Staff Writer

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