Home Holidays Remembrance Day Huge crowd for Langford Remembrance ceremony

Huge crowd for Langford Remembrance ceremony

First big outdoor ceremony since pre-pandemic 2019.

flypast, remembrance day
Flypast over Veterans Memorial Park in Langford on November 11, 2022. [Mary P Brooke / Island Social Trends]

Friday November 11, 2022 | LANGFORD, BC [Updated November 13, 2022]

News and photos by Mary P Brooke | Island Social Trends

Under grey skies the rain held off for about 1,500 people gathered for over an hour at Veterans Memorial Park in Langford for the 2022 Remembrance Day ceremony today.

The nippy 4°C mid-morning temperature didn’t deter attendance. There was only a light breeze, enough to keep the flags flapping just a little bit. People in the crowd appear to have dressed for the nearly-winter weather.

legion parade, nov 11, 2022
Parade from the Legion to Veterans Memorial Park on Remembrance Day, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]

The parade of military and cadets arrived led by Langford Legion 91 President Norm Scott, walking over from the Langford Legion to the open square at the park at Goldstream and Veterans Memorial Parkway.

From the podium there were announcements, prayers, the usual reading of In Flanders Fields, and announcement of the donor organizations placing wreaths at the cenotaph.

alistair macgregor, wreath
Alistiar MacGregor, MP (Cowichan-Malahat-Langford) laying a wreath at the Langford Remembrance Day ceremony, Nov 11, 2022. [Mary P Brooke / Island Social Trends]

A flypast of five planes occurred as the 2-minute period of silence wrapped up. A bugler played The Last Post. There was a small orchestra and a choir.

The overall mood seemed reverent — as always, but somehow with even more recognition of what society has to be grateful for in Canada.

This was the first fully-attended Remembrance Day ceremony in three years, in the wake of COVID which saw very small ceremonies and live-streaming in 2020 and 2021.

legion, rcmp, nov 2022
RCMP and cadets at the Remembrance Day ceremony in Langford, Nov 11, 2022. [Mary P Brooke / Island Social Trends]

VIPs attending this year included Alistair MacGregor, MP (Cowichan-Malahat-Langford), the new mayor of Langford Scott Goodmanson, and Hans Frederiksen representing outgoing Premier John Horgan who is the MLA for Langford-Juan de Fuca (Horgan was attending the Sooke ceremony) — all of whom sat in the front row.

alistair macgregor, mp, nov 2022
Alistair MacGregor, MP (Cowichan-Malahat-Langford), Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]

Also attending from Langford council were Lillian Szpak, Mary Wagner, Kimberley Guiry, Colby Harder. Attending from SD62 included board chair Ravi Parmar and new trustee Cendra Beaton. Former Langford councillors Norma Stewart and Lanny Seaton were in attendance in the crowd.

langford, optometrists

Wreaths were laid by MP, MLA rep, Langford Legion (wreath laid by Norm Scott), the municipalities of Langford (wreath laid by Mayor Scott Goodmanson), Colwood (wreath laid by Councillor Cynthia Day) and Highlands (wreath laid by Mayor Ken Williams), as well as by SD62 (wreath laid by former trustee Dianna Seaton) and several west shore organizations and some businesses.

Wreath donor groups were announced as wreaths were laid, though (as each year) the rhythm gets out of whack as to announcement vs who is actually at the cenotaph at that time.

Perhaps the most poignant placement was that of a bouquet of what appeared to be a dozen roses, brought without announcement to the cenotaph at the end by a young man. There was also a family that comforted one of the wreath-layers, in the intensity of the moment.

langford cenotaph, 2022
Small stones painted with Remembrance Day poppy images (by SD62 students), at the foot of the Langford Cenotaph, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]

A few songs by the choir wrapped things up, with God Save the King at the end.

Refreshments were made available to the public at the Masonic Lodge (right across from the park) this year, instead of at the usual Legion location on nearby Station Avenue (which is presently under renovations).

People had arrived by car (and walked from various parking opportunities in the downtown core), by public transit, and on bicycle. Some brought their dogs.

Compared to previous years there was less of a somber tone and more one of gratitude … people recognizing the good fortune to be enjoying freedoms in Canada and also that after three years through the COVID pandemic that a large assembled event could be held again in the community.

wreaths, cenotaph, langford
Remembrance Day wreaths at the Langford cenotaph, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]
scott goodmanson, mayor, langford
New Langford Mayor Scott Goodmanson with his daughter at the Remembrance Day ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]
crowd, remembrance, 2022
Remembrance Day crowd at Veterans Memorial Park, Nov 11, 2022. [Mary P Brooke / Island Social Trends]
wreaths, langford, 2022
Wreaths at the Langford Cenotaph, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]
family, remembrance day, 2022
Family comfort at the 2022 Remembrance Day ceremony. [Island Social Trends]
choir, remembrance day, 2022
Choir at the Remembrance Day ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]
dogs, langford
Dogs at the Remembrance Day ceremony in Langford, Nov 11, 2022. [Island Social Trends]

===== RELATED:

Remembrance Day 2022 – with notes about Langford and Sooke, and statements by Governor General, Prime Minister, NDP Leader, and BC Premier (November 11, 2022)

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mary p brooke
Mary P Brooke, Editor, Island Social Trends

Island Social Trends is a professional news publication reporting on the west shore and south Vancouver Island, as well as the news of BC and across Canada as it impacts living and lifestyle here on Vancouver Island.

Island Social Trends Editor Mary P Brooke has been reporting on news of the west shore region since 2008. That started with her quarterly news publication MapleLine Magazine (2008-2010), then the weekly print Sooke Voice News (2011-2013) and then the colour print/PDF West Shore Voice News (2014-2020) before Island Social Trends emerged mid-2020.

The news coverage focuses on people, leadership and community growth, with a socioeconomic lens.