Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

November 11, 2013 12:47 ET

Statement by General Lawson Marking Remembrance Day

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Nov. 11, 2013) - General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff, issued the following statement today marking Remembrance Day:

"On November 11th we mark the sacrifices and selfless deeds of those who have nobly served Canada - men and women who left their homes and all that was familiar to them to fight for their country and their country's values in hopes of a safer, secure, and more peaceful world.

"We remember our fallen and their loved ones. We remember those who were injured, physically or mentally; all of our veterans; and the families who help them carry on. We remember the enormous sacrifices and achievements made during the Great War, and the Second World War. In this, the Year of the Korean War Veteran, we also recognize the 26 000 Canadians who served in that conflict, and the 516 who did not come home.

"We also keep in our thoughts those who have taken up the torch and continue to fight on and serve Canada and Canadians at home and in missions around the world. We think of those who have been serving on maritime security operations in the Gulf, and those who provided airlift for French forces battling extremists in Mali. We think of those who have been hard at work right here at home, conducting sovereignty operations in the Arctic, helping with flood response in Alberta, and helping Canadians in distress with search and rescue missions across our vast land. We think of these members and so many more who have answered the call - who train, who prepare, who are separated from their families, and who represent Canadians with professionalism and distinction, day after day, and year after year.

"This year will also see our members mark our final Remembrance Day ceremony in Afghanistan. It is perhaps fitting that we take this occasion to reflect on our mission there and to recognize all those who served, those who were injured, and those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of Canada.

"Over 40 000 Canadian Armed Forces members have served in Afghanistan over the last 12 years. In that time, Afghanistan has changed for the better and Canada has played a key role throughout. From our first deployments following 9/11 pushing al Qaeda from the country; to the instrumental contributions our members made securing Kabul from 2003 to 2005; to the work of our members combating insurgents and training Afghan forces in Kandahar; to our ongoing training and mentoring mission in Kabul - we have helped to make a difference, and Canadians can be proud of that.

"As a consequence of these experiences, gained on operations in Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world, your Canadian Armed Forces are wiser, more experienced, more capable, and remain as determined as ever to defend Canada and Canadian interests when and where directed by the Government of Canada.

"Again, this Remembrance Day, current and former serving Canadian sailors, soldiers, airmen and women, and special forces members will join fellow Canadians in ceremonies here at home and around the world. Together, we will remember those who have gone before us. We will remember them."

Note to the Editor: For imagery from Canadian Armed Forces Remembrance Day Ceremonies across Canada and abroad, please refer to the Canadian Forces Imagery Gallery.

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