Memorial Held for Queen Elizabeth II

·3 min read

The days following Queen Elizabeth’s death were filled with tributes from government leaders, politicians and public figures but there was one group who quietly and steadfastly prepared to say goodbye in the same manner they have remembered every passing, with a dignified and solemn march to the cenotaph. Elizabeth II may have been our sovereign, but she was also a veteran, and the Wakaw Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion held a memorial ceremony for her at 11 am in Wakaw on the day of her funeral.

When then Princess Elizabeth turned 18 in 1944, she insisted upon joining the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS), the women’s branch of the British Army. She started as a second subaltern (similar to a second lieutenant) in the ATS and was later promoted to Junior Commander, the equivalent of Captain, and began her training as a mechanic in March 1945.

At the time of her passing Queen Elizabeth was colonel-in-chief of 16 British Army regiments and corps, and the Commander-in-Chief of the Canadian Armed forces a well as other Commonwealth countries. As a member of the ATS, she was the first female of the Royal family to be an active-duty member of the British Armed Forces.

Members of Wakaw Legion Branch 195 gathered at the Legion Hall, assembled the Colour Party directed by Sgt-at-Arms, Paul Danis, and marched to the cenotaph. President, Jack Jones, welcomed everyone explaining that the purpose of the gathering was to honour the passing of Canada’s Sovereign, Queen Elizabeth II, after which the gathering sang “O Canada”

At the 11th hour the Last Post was heard and was followed by 2 minutes silence. Reveille was played and followed by the Act of Remembrance.

In a prayer lead by Jack Jones, he thanked God for Queen Elizabeth’s reign and asked that He bless and keep all of us around the world who mourn her passing. He asked that God look after the Royal Family at this time and King Charles III as he assumes the throne.

Sandra Venne, Poppy Chairperson, then laid a wreath at the cenotaph for Queen Elizabeth II.

President Jack Jones gave a short address noting the great influence Queen Elizabeth had on so many people quoting many world leaders who have spoken on how she had impacted the world with her faith, dignity, grace, constancy, and service just to mention a few.

President Jones then pronounced the Benediction on the service which was followed by the singing of “God Save the King”. Legion members and those present at the Service of Remembrance then placed a poppy on the cenotaph prior to the Colour Party retiring.

Thank you goes out to Paul Danis, Sgt-at-Arms, for organizing the Colour Party; Sandra Venne, Poppy Chairperson, for laying the wreath and arranging poppies to be laid; Trent Brunanski, Andy Kuffner, Lynn Kuffner, and Sharon Bews for forming the Colour Party and bearing flags; and Iris Jones for operating the music throughout the service.

Carol Baldwin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Wakaw Recorder