Although COVID-19 has impacted Remembrance Day activities at Veterans Memorial Park this year, people still have the opportunity to share in the significance of the ceremony.
The in-person service on Nov. 11 will be available only to the Legion colour party and executive based on Remembrance Day protocol in the name of fallen soldiers past and present, said Norm Scott, president of the Royal Canadian Legion branch 91 in Langford.
The decision to not have the public in attendance was made following consultation with Langford Mayor Stew Young and council, Scott said. “It was made in the best interest of our veterans and the public due to safety concerns surrounding the pandemic.”
“We ask that all members of the public, including our veterans, stay home and watch the ceremony on TV. We will also have our small service streamed on Facebook through the Goldstream Gazette, which is doing a virtual shoot of the event and posting it live.”
Temporary fencing will be removed following the service to allow members of the community to pay their respects, Scott noted. Individuals and organizations who wish to place or purchase a wreath are asked to bring them to the Legion for placement at the cenotaph on Remembrance Day.
The wreaths, which will be placed prior to the ceremony and will remain for a day or so, can be purchased by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling the Legion office at 250-478-1828.
“We are sorry that the Legion will be closed on Nov. 11 due to the difficulty posed in ensuring social distancing and safety to attendees,” Scott said. “We hope you will support the Legion in other ways, including our poppy campaign starting Oct. 30.”
The Legion reopens on Thursday Nov. 12 at noon. Regular opening hours for the kitchen are Monday to Friday from 4 to 7:30 p.m., and on Saturdays from 1:30 to 7 p.m.