Mayor Jim McDonald didn’t shy from sharing his perception of the current state of affairs in the world during Remembrance Day remarks Saturday, Nov. 11.

Albert Illnik stands at attention during the service.
Stewart Burnett/NNSL photo

“With the great conflicts of the last century passed, we now face what I feel is the most dangerous time in our history,” said McDonald to a full East Three Secondary School gym for the day’s ceremony.

“Mankind is now in possession of the most destructive weapons that can rage total destruction on our planet. It is under these conditions that the men and women in uniform still choose to make the commitment to defend and protect the citizens of our great nation. That I am thankful for.”

He went on to say the world also now faces the threat of terrorism, for which there are few mechanisms of defence.

“I commend not only our military but also our first responders that fearlessly face these dangers with commitment and dedication,” said McDonald. “Here in the North, we must also recognize and thank our Canadian Rangers, who are the eyes and the ears of our military, ensuring that the true North remains strong and free.”

He finished his speech recognizing contributions of Indigenous people and locals in the military and saying Remembrance Day isn’t just about war, but about ideals and what the country stands for.

Pastor David DeKwant said he applauds men and women with the courage to stand up against “the great darkness in this world.”

“I might not be a solider, you might not be a solider, but we have an opportunity to lay down our life and our heart for our family, for our friends, for our community, for our country,” he said.

Don Craik, president of the Royal Legion McInness Branch 220, said it was important not only to remember those who sacrificed their lives but what they were fighting for, including the freedom to peacefully stand up for what they believe in, not suffer racial or religious persecution and travel freely throughout the world.

The event ended with a wreath-laying ceremony.

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