N.L. students honour fallen soldiers at London ceremony

Steve Bartlett
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More than 100 students from Newfoundland and Labrador remembered Canada's First and Second World War sacrifices Friday afternoon.

They were among 1,000-plus Canadian youth who participated in the Canada Memorial Student Remembrance Ceremony in London, England.

It took place at the Canada Memorial in Green Park, just to the left of Buckingham Palace.

Zayd Kharaishi, a Grade 9 student at Lakecrest in St. John's, was one of the students to lay a wreath on monument's steps.

He did so with Gordon Campbell, Canadian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, and Melissa Lacharity from Craigflower Elementary in Victoria, B.C.

Asked what he was thinking as he helped place the wreath, Kharaishi said, "A sense of remembrance, a sense of honour and pride in the sacrifice made by these soldiers."

Veteran Affairs Minister Stephen Blaney was among the dignitaries who addressed the youth.

He said he was honoured by the soldiers' sacrifice, and the students' presence.

"That means so much," he said, adding the event was connecting a heroic generation of the past to the generation of today.

Blaney stressed the importance of remembering the fallen, and not forgetting why the died.

The ceremony was part of the Vimy Ridge 2012 National Student Remembrance Tour organized by EF Educational Tours.

Monday is the 95th anniversary of Vimy Ridge.

For more on Friday's event, see The Weekend Telegram.

Reporter Steve Bartlett is in London as a guest of EF Tours.

Organizations: Lakecrest, Vimy Ridge 2012 National Student Remembrance Tour

Geographic location: London, Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador Green Park St. John's United Kingdom Victoria

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Recent comments

  • Chris Shaw
    April 09, 2012 - 15:27

    Nick, you talk from a great height of ignorance.. I was there on Friday and met some of these Students - they represented their youth, their families and their country with honour. I was proud to welcome them to our city on their way to Vimy. To those parents who have supported their children to make this trip, it is money well spent and if the students gain empathy for the sacrifice and the futility of ignorant aggression - it is worth a tax dollar. Those who ignore history are fated to repeat it. For your education, there is a village called Sandgate that holds a remembrance service every Canada Day (since 1919) at Shorncliffe Cemetery to remember the sacrifice and to care for the Canadian boys who never made it home. It is the local school children who partake in this and tend the graves. Yes it is in school time and my taxes pay for that trip – and bloody worthwhile in my opinion or would you be happy for us Brits to forget about your countrymen? Chairman – Shorncliffe Trust, Sandgate, Kent

  • seanoairborne
    April 08, 2012 - 21:32

    I think I'll stop writing to the letters section on here.You're just full of PC crap.I wrote you a letter to the editor yesterday,which makes way more sense than most of the dribble that you have in your letters section on here,and you never posted it.I think the real reason why you never posted it was because my comment involved Women's and Black studies in schools in the US that have taken the place of history and geography and common sense to the detriment of us all, especially our veterans, to indocrinate our kids to the mythical plight of blacks and women in our society?So,i guess,according to your editor I'm a racist and a women hater because I tell the unvarnished truth?I'd like to remind you of an old movie line that's apt for this occasion"you can't handle the truth"?You say you have a free press?That's a good one!It would seem that you're only free to publish those screeds that you agree with?And that's your right.But I've always thought that Newfoundlanders were a much more open society, in the print and the electronic media to other peoples thoughts and ideas, than the NY and LA times?But I guess I was mistaken?Alas,it would seem that that has changed drastically from what I remember growing up in St.John's!Any good Newf tells it like it is,not like someone wants it to be!And I'm a damn good Newf!What a pity!You've sold your souls to the PC morons. And I thought you were a pretty good read up to now.

  • Emily
    April 06, 2012 - 16:55

    Nick,why do you think these students were there through tax payers dollars? Usually these EF Tours are paid by the student (or their parent or guardian) 100% with no funding. It is good to see young people interested in history and too be so passionate about it!

  • Jane
    April 06, 2012 - 15:06

    Nick - the students or their parents are probably paying their own way. I think it is important to remember such important events in our history. Thanks to the teachers and parents who arranged the tour & for giving the students this opportunity.

  • Nick
    April 06, 2012 - 12:52

    Good excuse to waste tax dollars; I think I want to remember our fallen soldiers in Hawaii and France, can I also get all expense paid trip? Thanks !

    • Grateful Parent
      April 06, 2012 - 13:58

      All expense paid trip??? Are you for real??? My daughter is on that school trip and it cost me a pretty penny to send her there!! Get your facts straight before you make comments on something you know nothing about!!!!!

    • Robert
      April 06, 2012 - 18:19

      Wow Nick! I think you need to spend a few days in Syria where you would be shot for saying what you just said. There are far worse ways our tax dollars get spent and you assume all expenses were paid.

    • Shevon
      April 06, 2012 - 23:11

      I do not know if you are speaking about the Vimy celebration or the students attending, but I can assure you that not one penny of your tax dollars were spent to send my son on this once in a lifetime trip! Maybe you should get your facts straight before you start making assumptions!

    • WPC
      April 07, 2012 - 06:39

      Above comment, get your facts straight. EF Tours will organize trips for students paid for by the students and their families. But besides that, it is money well spent by our Government in remembering the sacrifices made by our Armed Services, past, present & future. It is all these people (CF members) that protect your right to complain and be a truly negative person, intent only on starting an argument.

  • Political watcher
    April 06, 2012 - 12:33

    Great to see so many local student paricipating in this ceremony. The Canada gates should hold a specialplace in the hearts of Newfoundlanders;at the top of the pillars at the gates are wreaths and in the center of those wreaths one identifies Canada and the other list Newfoundland identifying our signifigance as an independent Country and our contribution.