Remembering Remembrance Day
Remembrance Day will be celebrated today. It is a special day set aside to remember all those men and women killed during the two World Wars and other conflicts. At one time, the day was known as Armistice Day. It was renamed Remembrance Day after the Second World War.
Remembrance Day is also known as Poppy Day, because it is traditional to wear an artificial poppy. As the Guyana Legion gears for another Remembrance Day, President of the Guyana Legion, Col (Ret’d) Carl Morgan disclosed that the event is celebrated on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, which marks the signing of the Armistice, on November 11, 1918, to signal the end of World War One.
He said today, there will be two minutes of silence followed by wreath laying at the Cenotaph during the ceremony. Persons in attendance will include the President, the Prime Minister, the Chief of Staff, the Commissioner of Police, leader of the Opposition, President of the Guyana Legion, the Mayor of Georgetown, the Heads of Mission, Representative – Guyana Ex-Soldiers’ Benevolent Association and the Ex- GDF Association of Guyana.
Any other Persons/Organisations wishing to lay wreaths at the Cenotaph on that day may do so after the end of the Service.
He said that the “poppy” has its origin since in World War 1. In 1921 it was modified as symbol of sacrifice, but later became a symbol of remembering soldiers who served in the different wars. Morgan noted that some Guyanese soldiers have served in the two World Wars.
Morgan disclosed that Guyanese therefore regard the poppy as something to be worn during Remembrance Week in November and during an Armistice Day Parade. The Commonwealth has now come to accept its much wider meaning.
The poppy is a white flower but this symbolic red flower represents the blood that stained the flowers on the battlefield of Flanders Field during the First World War.