Veterans Affairs Canada

Veterans Affairs Canada

November 04, 2005 10:49 ET

Veterans' Week 2005 Launched in Ottawa: Senate Ceremony 'Honours Veterans by Teaching Youth'

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 4, 2005) - The Honourable Dan Hays, Speaker of the Senate, together with the Honourable Albina Guarnieri, Minister of Veterans Affairs, officially launched Veterans' Week 2005 today during the annual Senate Ceremony, as part of the Year of the Veteran. The theme of this year's event and for Veterans' Week 2005 (November 5 to 11) is "Honouring Veterans by Teaching Youth."

"It's important for young Canadians to remember the sacrifices of all the men and women who have served in our country's armed forces in times of peace or war. By understanding the nature of those sacrifices, today's youth will be able to better appreciate the rights and freedoms Veterans of our armed forces have helped secure for them," said Speaker of the Senate, Dan Hays.

"In the Year of the Veteran, we have honoured a century of great strides and greater sacrifices by Canada's Veterans," said Minister Guarnieri during her address. "The challenge ahead is to pass on a more vibrant tradition of remembrance to a younger generation that has rediscovered a glowing history that makes us all proud to be Canadian."

The Veterans' Week launch, held in the Senate Chamber, included a large delegation of distinguished Veterans who were paired with youth representatives for a special passing of the torch ceremony. Aboriginal Veterans and youth who have just returned from an Aboriginal Spiritual Journey in Europe were also present for the Senate Ceremony, which officially marked the end of the Journey.

Colonel Tom Lawson, who appears with his father and son on the Veterans' Week 2005 poster, and Blake Seward, an award-winning history teacher from Smiths Falls District Collegiate Institute, spoke to guests about the importance of passing along the torch of remembrance to younger generations. The Senate ceremony was completed with a commemorative wreath-laying by Speaker Hays, Minister Guarnieri and the Speaker of the House of Commons, the Honourable Peter Milliken.

Other Veterans' Week events in Ottawa

A number of other events are taking place in the National Capital Region during Veterans' Week 2005. On November 8, the City of Ottawa and Veterans Affairs Canada will host the annual Candlelight Tribute at Lansdowne Park, starting at 6:30 p.m. Veterans and Canadian Forces members will be paired with students to commemorate those who have served our country during times of war, military conflict and peace.

On November 10 at approximately 11:30 a.m., the VIA Rail Train of Remembrance will arrive at the Ottawa VIA Rail station, 200 Tremblay Road. The train will carry more than 300 Veterans, retired military personnel and their family members from Halifax to Ottawa for the National Remembrance Day ceremony on November 11. The train will be met by Minister Guarnieri and local-area cadets.

On November 11, the Governor General of Canada, together with the Prime Minister and Minister of Veterans Affairs, will honour members of the Canadian Forces who gave their lives in service to Canada during a dedication ceremony for the Seventh Book of Remembrance. The ceremony will be held in the Hall of Honour on Parliament Hill. The event will be attended by the 2005 Silver Cross mother, Mrs. Claire Leger, her husband and other families of those commemorated in the Book. The event will be directly followed by the national Remembrance Day ceremony at the National War Memorial, beginning at 10:30 a.m.

Events in the National Capital Region are part of a series of Veterans' Week 2005 events taking place across the country. For more information on Veterans' Week events across Canada, or to add an event to the Veterans' Week events list, please visit the Veterans Affairs Canada Web site at www.vac-acc.gc.ca.

2005 is the Year of the Veteran: Celebrate. Honour. Thank. Remember. Teach.

Contact Information

  • Veterans Affairs Canada
    Janice Summerby
    Media Relations Advisor
    (613) 992-7468
    or
    Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs
    Corey Hobbs
    Director of Communications
    (613) 947-4908
    or
    Senate Communications Directorate
    Leslie Dauncey
    Senior Communications Advisor
    (613) 995-7966