Under warm, sunny skies, hundreds of people gathered at the Grand Parade in Halifax on Friday, to remember and honour those who have served in the Canadian military.
The Remembrance Day service welcomed members of the public after two years of COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.
Glen Leduc, a 33-year-veteran who co-ordinated and emceed the ceremony, said it's great to have it fully open to the public once again.
"It gives people the chance to gather together, to reflect upon the moment [and] to draw support from each other," Leduc said ahead of the ceremony.
Chris Richards, an 11-year-veteran of the Canadian navy, was there with his young daughter Friday.
"I don't look at it as a duty, I look at it as a privilege being able to come out and honour those who came before me," he said.
The ceremony began with the playing of O Canada before a trumpeter performed the Last Post near the cenotaph.
People bowed their heads as a number of cannon shots rang out from nearby Citadel Hill, before participating in two minutes of silence as the clock struck 11 a.m. AT.
More cannon shots could be heard over the sound of bagpipes following the silence.
As the Canadian flag sat at half-mast, a number of dignitaries laid wreaths on the large stone monument, including Lt.-Gov. Arthur LeBlanc, MP Andy Fillmore, MLA John Lohr and Halifax's deputy mayor, Pam Lovelace.
The parents of Pte. Nathan Smith, a Nova Scotian who died during his deployment in Afghanistan in 2002, also laid a wreath in his memory.
In his honour, Charlotte and Lloyd Smith were given the Memorial Cross, also known as the Silver Cross, which is awarded by the federal government to the loved ones of Canadian Armed Forces personnel who died in service.
Nathan Smith grew up in Ostrea Lake, N.S., and joined the Canadian Armed Forces in 1998.
He was killed during a live fire exercise near Kandahar when his group was mistakingly bombed by a coalition aircraft.
"Our boys and girls, they sacrificed their lives to help bring freedom to another country, but that's what we do as Canadians," his father, Lloyd Smith, told reporters.
"It's who we are. That's what a free nation does."
Four soldiers, including Smith and Pte. Richard Green of Mill Cove, N.S., were killed. They were the first Canadians to die in the war in Afghanistan.
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