AMHERST, N.S. – Hundreds of people gathered at Victoria Square on Remembrance Day in Amherst to pay their respects to the fallen men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure our freedom.
This year’s Remembrance Day took on extra significance for Canadians as 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of both the battles at Vimy Ridge and Passchendaele, both defining battles in Canadian history.
Some call the Canadian victory at Vimy Ridge the birth of our nation or Canada’s coming of age.
Vimy Ridge, a long hill that dominates the landscape, is located in northern France, 175 kilometres north of Paris.
The Battle of Vimy Ridge began on April 9 at 5:30 a.m. when 20,000 Canadian soldiers attacked German strongholds.
Victory at Vimy came four days later, on April 12, but it did not come without cost. There were 3,598 Canadian lives lost, and another 7,000 wounded.
After their great success at Vimy Ridge, Canadians were sent north to Belgium to fight at Passchendaele.
In a final battle on November 10, Canadians cleared the remaining German soldiers from the Ridge
Canadians lost more than 4,000 lives, while 12,000 were wounded.