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Redcliff Legion looks to both past and future at Remembrance Day gathering

Posted on November 24, 2023 by Ryan Dahlman
Commentator/Courier Photo BY Anna Smith Lest we forget: Bagpipes and drums make their periodic appearance throughout the day at the Redcliff Legion, following the service, much to the delight of those spending the day interacting with their local veterans.

By Anna Smith

Remembrance Day saw the Redcliff Legion’s building in the very heart of town full of veterans, volunteers, and many just looking to honour those who came before them.

While it’s not quite the crowds that they may have attracted a few years back, said Legion President Baz Cole, the people who keep the doors open day to day were heartened by the size of the crowd that gathered for both the ceremony and the socializing after the fact.

“We had a good contingent from CFB Suffield as well, a bunch of soldiers. So it was good to see them out,” said Cole. They also welcomed some soldiers from BATUS for the day, which was more than welcome, especially with the recent changes at Suffield.

The ceremony itself went well, said Cole, though it was a bit windy for the outdoor portions, and it’s turnouts like this that give the struggling Legion hope for the coming years as they look to hold on until their 100th year serving their community, and perhaps beyond.

While the Legion is in better shape than they have been, with the past few months generating nearly $20,000 in profit, they aren’t quite out of the tunnel yet; Cole hopes they can encourage more members of the public to consider volunteering as well as membership in the Legion, to keep Remembrance Day ceremonies like this – as well as the central community fixture that the Legion provides throughout the year – open for the foreseeable future.

“If you want to become a member, if you have a granddad or something like that with a military background, you can still be an associate member. If you don’t have any military history or background in your family you can still be an affiliate voting member,” said Cole. “You join the Legion to remember. That’s the main, main reason to, because if it wasn’t for them, we wouldn’t be here.”

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