Veterans' Week 2011
Ottawa – November 4, 2011
From November 5 to 11, Canadians from across the country will join together to pay tribute to Canada's Veterans of today and yesterday, and to honour the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice defending our values and way of life.
Through hundreds of commemorative ceremonies and events, they will remember the accomplishments and sacrifices of generations of serving men and women with respect and gratitude. Veterans, as well as families and friends of Veterans and still-serving men and women will also remember; they will remember fallen or injured comrades, fathers, mothers, sons, daughters and friends who gave their lives for Country or returned home ill or injured.
For members of the Veterans community, Veterans' Week accentuates many very personal memories, some good but also some difficult ones. I hope that all Veterans will be surrounded by friends and family members during Veterans' Week and will find comfort in the nation's expression of gratitude. On November 5, 2011, many of you will also participate in the second Annual Canadian Veterans National Day of Protest to remind elected officials of the nation's obligation to address the needs of ill and injured Veterans and serving members.
As many of you know, I was a search and rescue technician for more than 30 years and I retain a strong attachment to that community. It is therefore with sadness that on Saturday, November 5, I will be attending the funeral of Sergeant Janick Gilbert, a search and rescue technician who lost his life during a rescue operation in the Arctic on Thursday, October 27, 2011.
This tragedy reminds us all of the risks that all serving men and women face, whether they serve in times of peace, conflict or war; or participate in operations abroad or here in Canada.
I salute all Veterans of the Canadian Forces and the RCMP.
I salute all serving members who continue to serve our country with pride and courage as did Veterans before them.
I salute all families who support them and whose sacrifices receive too little recognition!
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