On parade

I normally end up at military parades where there are a few hundred men and women marching about – sometimes there are smaller unit parades with maybe a hundred, and then some that are much smaller.

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The smaller ones are often quite powerful, as in the case of the 10 men and women from the 8 Wing Telecommunications and Information Systems Squadron (8 TIS Sqn) who formed the marching contingent in the Remembrance Day Parade in Norwood Ontario.

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The Ops Flight Officer and the Technical Service Master Warrant Officer (MWO) laid a wreath at the cenotaph on behalf of 8 Wing/CFB Trenton. Out of sight were two members of Workshops who set up the sound system – two people who were the first to arrive and last to leave.

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There was one more person from 8 TIS Sqn – someone who was not on parade, was not required to attend, but did so out of a sense of ‘being the right thing for a person in uniform to do…’

Her husband was on parade – he was marching with the other 9 members from his unit. His uniform was immaculate, his boots shone to perfection – his appearance inspection ready, his demeanour exactly what one would expect from a professional.

Her boots were also glistening, and the uniform that she did not have to wear, was also immaculate. A young woman who could have stayed home instead of standing outside on a cold Novembers day that saw flakes of snow falling.

A mother who walked the parade route with her young son, pushed the stroller that carried her tiny baby daughter…

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That’s something to think about – the sense of duty and pride quietly displayed by men and women in uniform, a sense of duty and pride manifested in very powerful ways that are at the same time likely not noticed or understood by many.

That’s part of Remembrance Day…

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