“If ye break faith with us who die, we will not sleep, though poppies grow in Flander’s fields.”
It has always amazed me that today is not a bank holiday at home. It is a significant day in the calendar that every race, creed and religion should value. This year’s British ceremonies are masked (sic) in a coronavirus lockdown. More reason if needed to never forget those we lost fighting to protect our freedom.
Bermuda takes today very seriously, with the island shutting down to observe Remembrance Day. The island suffered severe losses during the World Wars fighting overseas on behalf of the Brits, Americans and Canadians protecting the freedom of those back home on this 21 sq. mile island.
Due to it’s location Bermuda was an important military base, especially during WWII, The Royal Naval Dockyard oversaw trans-atlantic convoys and the Royal Air Force as well as the Royal Navy had a large presence on the island as did the British Security Co-Ordination.
This American based covert operation ran by MI6 had more than 1,200 people working on the island finding coded messages and secret writings and identifying spies working for Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and Vichy France in the Americas. The Island was also a base for direction finding equipment to help identify locations of German submarines and took down Enigma encoded messages, which were sent to Bletchley Park.
Later today we will take our daughter to the Cenotaph in Hamilton to look at the wreaths that will be laid at 11am. Sadly today’s ceremony is a ‘closed event’ due to Covid-19. Bermuda’s Cenotaph is an exact replica of the British Cenotaph, designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens, located at Whitehall.
CA, as a strong proponent of full recognition of this day of Remembrance, I would not want it to be declared a national holiday. The reason being is that it would become just that…….a holiday. All schools should have educational programs in place, leading up to the day and every citizen encouraged to attend (in non-coronavirus times) the many ceremonies, or simply stop whatever it is they are doing, at 11/11/11 and observe two minutes of silence and contemplation. It is so important that we emphasize the significance of the day, as the numbers of actual WW2 veterans dwindle to a treasured few. Lest we forget!
Point well made Bob.