How long ago was it? 1944 – early in the morning, the ramps from the landing craft hit the water and the men stormed ashore. Long ago.

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  June 6, 2012  There are fewer of them every year.  Those that do show up carry the scars from their experiences and memories that are old but not forgotten.

D  Day – the day the allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy and began the process of taking Europe back from the Axis forces.

D Day flag party approaching the Naval Memorial at Spencer Smith Park.

Some 15,000 Canadian troops stormed those beaches.  The day before nine minesweepers had crept in under the cover of darkness to clear shipping lanes for the landing craft with soldiers and equipment aboard.

More than 1,500 of the men who stormed the beach never made it home.

Hamilton was represented at the D Day service

This morning at the Naval Memorial a group of maybe 40 people were on hand.  The sun was bright, the colour party, showing its age trooped along the waterfront walkway and presented their colours.  The salute was taken, prayers were said.  It was quiet.

Our MP was in Ottawa, his wife filled in for him.  Our MPP was at Queen’s Park; one of her administrative assistants filled in for her.  The Regional Chair was on hand.

The city was not represented.  Six council members and a Mayor on our city council.  Too busy I guess.

The veterans have a piece of poetry that is brought out on occasions like this.  It goes:

Age shall not weary them, nor the years contemn. `At the going down of the sun and in the morning.  We will remember them.

We will indeed remember a city council that was unable to muster the decency to respect the memory of the men and the ships we lost to protect a democracy that allows them to hold office.



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