Veterans Day, or Remembrance Day or Armistice Day, as it’s also known in the Commonwealth countries, just ended. Let’s see how people honored their militaries’ sacrifices.
In northern France, a 100-gun salute commemorated the centenary of the Battle of Passchendaele. Reenactors from around the world gathered and fired restored WWI artillery pieces.
Passchendaele, which took place from July to November 1917, was one the Great War’s more horrendous engagements. Almost 500,000 soldiers from both sides died. Many of them drowned in the mud that had followed that year’s autumn rains.
In Scotland, Aberlady Parish Church erected a wall of red poppies with 6,000 individually knitted poppies. The organizers were inspired by the 2014 Tower of London display, when 888,246 poppies, each for a dead Commonwealth soldier, had formed an ocean of red.
The Magnificent display of the Aberlady Parish Church (Twitter)
In London, the Big Ben temporarily ended its silence due to repairs to sound a two-minute moment of silence at 11:00 a.m. Crowds also gathered at the Cenotaph memorial in downtown London.
The Cenotaph, London (MoD.gov.uk)
In Australia, the famous Sydney Opera was lit with red poppies as the nation, alongside New Zealand, held a minute of silence to honor the ANZAC (Australian and New Zealand Army Corps) dead of past wars.
The Sydney Opera was lit with red poppies (Twitter)
In Canada, thousands attended a service held at the National War Memorial in Ottawa. Canadians had a particular reason to remember this Veterans Day as in the Battle of Passchendaele the Canadians had shouldered most of the fighting.
The Canadian service in Ottawa (Twitter)
In Paris, a memorial was held in the Arc de Triomphe, where an eternal flame honours the dead of past wars. French President Emmanuel Macron attended the ceremony and laid a wreath at the tomb of the unknown soldier.
The Arc de Triomphe (Twitter)
In South Africa, a memorial was held in the Cenotaph in Cape Town.
A memorial was also held in the middle east by the coalition forces battling ISIS.
Coalition troops battling ISIS also held a service (MoD.gov.uk)
The above services are only a sample of the memorials held. Throughout the world thousands of local services were also held. They had nothing to envy from their bigger counterparts.
How did you spend your Veterans Day? Did your county/town/city hold any special memorial?
Featured image: Britain’s Princess Anne, front center, walks down the steps of the Cross of Sacrifice at Tyne Cot cemetery in Zonnebeke, Belgium on Saturday, Nov. 11, 2017. Tyne Cot Cemetery is the resting place of 11,954 soldiers of the Commonwealth Forces from the First World War. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)
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