Faculty, students, and members of the community came together on the steps of Davis to pay their respects during Wednesday’s Remembrance Day ceremony.
“We live in an open society with a great deal of freedom and democracy, but in this society there is also the opportunity to become complacent,” said acting VP and UTM principal Ulrich Krull, who addressed the crowd during the ceremony. “[Freedom] isn’t something that is a natural consequence of being in Canada. It is something that has been fought for by those before us […] we need to appreciate this,” he said.
Calling the ceremony to order was manager of Campus Police Services Rob Messacar, who made opening remarks discussing the significance of gathering as a community to show gratitude to and pride for those who helped establish the rights and freedoms Canadians have today. Closing remarks of the ceremony were cut short when Messacar passed out and collapsed. Soon after, Messacar regained consciousness and was assisted by UTM’s emergency response team, ECSpeRT.
Regor Abuloc, a UTM student and member of the Canadian Forces Naval Reserves at HMCS York, recited “In Flanders Fields” while “The Last Post” was played as UTM police services lowered the Canadian and provincial flags to half-mast.
Professor Scott Munro played “The Lament” on his bagpipes while Krull and ECSpeRT laid wreaths by the flagpole.
Those in attendance included Officer Cadet Zeeshan Macklai of the Governor Generals Horse Guard, who shared what he reflected on during the two minutes of observed silence.
“I reflected on all of our fallen comrades and what they have sacrificed so that we can walk freely here. I think about how proud I am to be Canadian,” he said. “Freedom isn’t free. It’s not free at all.”