People are welcome to lay a wreath at the cenotaph in Pitt Meadows on Nov. 11, but they must be retrieved by dusk the same day. (The News files)

People are welcome to lay a wreath at the cenotaph in Pitt Meadows on Nov. 11, but they must be retrieved by dusk the same day. (The News files)

Royal Canadian Legion cancels official Remembrance Day ceremonies in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows

Residents encouraged to find safe ways to honour the day

Local legions have cancelled official Remembrance Day ceremonies again this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Maple Ridge a scaled-back ceremony will be taking place at the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 88 on Nov. 11, but there will be no public ceremony at the cenotaph, said Lesley Nantel, secretary manager of the local legion branch.

They are asking people who want to commemorate the day to head to the cenotaph in Memorial Peace Park to observe their own minute of silence.

In a statement the legion’s executive said they are following the guidelines of Dominion Command not to have a parade or gathering this year at either the Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows cenotaphs.

“Although a live ceremony/gathering honouring our Veterans and their sacrifices is considered paramount by the Legion, we have once again decided to scale back our service this year due to the ongoing pandemic,” the statement read.

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“Members are encouraged to take their wreaths to their local cenotaph throughout the day of November 11th and pay their respects to their family and friends who have paid the ultimate sacrifice.”

They are encouraging residents to tune into an online or televised service from Ottawa or Vancouver and are hoping that the community does take the time to observe a moment of silence, “to mark the sacrifice and for the many who have fallen in service, and to acknowledge the courage of those who still serve”.

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In Whonnock the public can attend a moment of silence outside the Whonnock Lake Centre at 11 a.m., but there will be no other ceremony, said Brad Jennings, president of the Whonnock Community Association.

Carolyn Baldridge, communications with the City of Pitt Meadows, said residents are being encouraged to find safe ways to honour the day from home.

People are invited to lay a wreath at the Pitt Meadows cenotaph on Remembrance Day, she said, but wreaths need to be picked up before dusk that evening.

Poppies will be available for purchase by donation from Pitt Meadows City Hall starting on Nov. 1.


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