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Flags of Remembrance to honour veterans, first responders

Red Deer Advocate - 9/6/2022

Veterans and first responders will be honoured during Flags of Remembrance this Saturday.

Veterans Voices of Canada will raise 128 Canadian flags to represent the 128,000 Canadian military members and RCMP officers and missing-in-action service personnel lost in service since the Boer War at the annual tribute.

Flags of Remembrance ceremonies will be held in both Sylvan Lake and Lacombe. Additionally, there will be ceremonies in Philipsburg, Que., and Dunnville, Ont.

"We began this in 2014 and we've had communities right across Canada wanting to build onto this in the future," said Al Cameron, Veterans Voices of Canada founder.

"A lot of times think of remembering our veterans and first responders on Nov. 11. We feel it should be every day of the year. With our Flags of Remembrance tribute, we ensure remembrance season begins earlier."

Veterans Voices of Canada is still looking for volunteers to support Flags of Remembrance, Cameron noted.

"The idea of this is for each flag pole to have the name of a past or present military veteran or first responder. Therefore we need 128 sponsors each year. At this point, we're at a little less than 50 per cent," said Cameron.

"All of the funds gained from our Flags of Remembrance tribute go towards our Veterans Voices of Canada initiatives. We also donate a portion to other charities or veterans in need."

Anyone interested in becoming a sponsor for the event is asked to contact Veterans Voices of Canada:

"We're really fortunate to have been able to donate a substantial amount over eight years now, since we started Flags of Remembrance," he said.

"One of the things we really wanted to do was ensure we helped community through our programs. We're making a difference and that's really important for what we're doing."

The Sylvan Lake ceremony takes place at Centennial Park (4403 Lakeshore Dr.) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The flag unfurling and veteran horsewalk ceremony begins at 11 a.m.

The Lacombe ceremony also begins at 11 a.m. and will take place at the Pentagon Farm Centre (4950 Harrington Ridge #1).