Local cadets pay tribute to Vimy sacrifice

c14Apr 12, 2015  NEWS RELEASE 155 BORDEN GRAY AIR CADETS ************************* Local Army and Air Cadets paraded to honour the sacrifices and achievements of the April 9, 1917, Battle of Vimy Ridge, this past Saturday.

Local Army and Air Cadets paraded to honour the sacrifices and achievements of  the April 9, 1917,  Battle of Vimy Ridge, this past Saturday.

The parade was held at the Queen Street Cenotaph which was lead by a combined Pipe and Drum Band made up of the 2310 Army Cadet and the 155 Borden Gray Air Cadet Pipes and Drum Bands with cadets ranging in age from 12 to 18 years of age.

Acting Sub Lieutenant Richard Blackstock a staff member of the Royal Sovereign Sea Cadet Corps played the Last Post as a tribute to the over 3,598 Canadian Soldiers killed and 10,602 casualties of the Battle of Vimy.

This year marks the 98th anniversary that saw for the first time in World War I all four Canadian Divisions attacking as a combined force which commenced at 05:30 on Easter Monday with the majority of the ridge captured by the end of the first day of fighting.

Prior to the start of this year’s  parade the cadets viewed a presentation that gave them an little understanding of the events of World War I and the hardships the Canadian Soldiers faced in the trenches.

When Canada took on the role of capturing Vimy Ridge their commanders took a new approach in the prior battle training which included every soldier knowledgeable of what their role was and to practice in a mock up of the ground that they would fight across.

They also learned of the building of the Vimy War Memorial, which is located at the top of Hill 145 and overlooks the Canadian Battlefield.

Use of the land for the Canadian National Vimy Memorial and battlefield park was granted for all time by the people of the French nation to the people of Canada.

There are 11,285 inscribed names on the ramparts of the memorial, each of a Canadian soldier who were posted as “missing presumed dead” in France.

The cadets also heard firsthand accounts from three of their staff members who have traveled to and been inspired by all that they experienced which included the preserved trenches, tunnels of the battlefield, the view from the top of hill 145 and the towering tribute to those that paid the ultimate sacrifice during the four years of World War One.

The Army Cadet League of Canada has recently taken on the Vimy Commemoration Project so that young and older Canadians remember the sacrifices made of so many young men and what is referred to as the Birth of a Nation as the first of many battles during World War One  that Canadians were victorious in.

This earned Canada a separate signature on the Versailes Peace Treaty at the end of the war.

For this reason Army Cadet Corps across Canada are remembering the sacrifices made at Vimy much like the Sea Cadets for the Battle of the Atlantic and the Air Cadets for the Battle of Britain.

Each of the attending cadets for this year’s parade received a Vimy Foundation pin that has four colours, one colour for each Canadian Division that fought at Vimy.

At the conclusion of the parade as the cadets arrived back at the Pine Street Armoury where soup and sandwiches were ready for them, the snow started to fall which was very omniscient of the sleet that greeted the Canadian Soldiers that advanced on the German trenches of Vimy Ridge 98 years prior.

To learn more about the cadet program or more about Vimy Ridge please visit the links provided.


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