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Mission Legion prepares to remember the fallen

Remembrance Day ceremony begins at 10:40 a.m. at Cenotaph
Mission Legion (Branch 57) president Pauline Mann expects a good turnout for this year’s Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11. /Dillon White

Little has changed with this year’s Remembrance Day ceremony in Mission, but the absence of one of its veterans is new for the local Legion.

Veteran Clarence Carter passed away in April 2023 at 102 years old. During the Second World War, Carter joined the Canadian Airforce and was stationed in Newfoundland. He was part of a crew that flew escort missions for convoys that supplied Europe’s western front.

“Mission had a population of around 10,000 at that time, and there was over 1,000 that joined the armed forces,” Carter said in a 2020 interview with the Mission Record.

This year’s Remembrance Day ceremony will start at the Mission Legion on Nov. 11 at 10:40 a.m.

“It’s important mainly because of what they did for us — giving up their lives, going forth and doing what they had to do,” Mann said.

After the ceremony, there will be a wreath laying, followed by entertainment in a tent, along with a beef dip and salad for $12 .

“It’s the same as it was last year. It’s the same as every year. It’s just remembering the veterans and hoping that we have a good turnout from the community. We usually do,” Mann said.

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Mann says every year is getting bigger and bigger and activities in the run-up to Remembrance Day have been successful.

“Mission’s pretty good to the Legion,” Mann said.

In the past, the Legion would host the ceremony at the Clarke Theatre but moved the event due to the convenience of having the event onsite with the Cenotaph.

Mann has been president of the local Legion for 10 years. She initially joined as an associate to support her husband, whose father was a veteran. She says her favourite part of working at the Legion has been meeting the people and the families of the veterans who come and go.

“A long time ago, I used to read the names of the World War One, World War Two and the Korean War veterans but that’s close to a couple hundred names,” Mann said. “It seemed that people were getting restless when I was doing that because well, it’s a lot of names, but it’s the people that went from here to go and fight wars so we have a place to live.”

Mann says many Afghanistan veterans aren’t interested in getting involved with the Legion. However, local support remains a constant and Mission schools are laying the groundwork for that to continue, she says.

“The schools are getting a little bit more interested in talking to the kids about what happened a long time ago, even though it’s not in their lives, or maybe their parents weren’t involved or anything like that. But the schools, I think, are getting a little bit more interested in and dealing with Remembrance Day,” she said.

All money collected by the Legion for Remembrance Day stays in the community. Mann says the Legion is a welcoming place and hopes to see more people get involved.

Dillon White

About the Author: Dillon White

I joined the Mission Record in November of 2022 after moving to B.C. from Nova Scotia earlier in the year.
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