History Can Never Forget
Written by: Josephine Dora Spitale
For History buffs like me, Battleground CNE!, The Military History of the Grounds (1812 to WWII) is a sure stop at the CNE this year. In the hallway of steps that it took for me to walk from one side of the exhibit to the other, l literately traveled through time from 1812 to WWII, and as the eras passed, information was transmitted to me through pictures, words and exhibits. Like all students of History, I have learned about war extensively but seeing the information in this way, really brought history, like the cliché goes, to life. I was surprised at how well the information was presented. I had no idea that during the wars the CNE grounds were offered as a military base or that it served as the location of an internment camp. Friendly CNE staff is available at the exhibit (pictured above) to answer any questions you may have, so even if history is new to you, strike up a conversation and learn something new!
Every year since 1921, veterans have joined together in the Warrior’s Day Parade, this year taking place on August 18th. Before the parade, the names of soldiers who died were read and it sent chills down my spine instantly. During the parade I found it an unforgettable experience to put faces to pages of textbooks. I wanted to know each and every one of these people, their lives, experiences and stories. I wondered what it would be like to not only live during a major war, but serve in one or to say goodbye to a loved one and be completely unsure if it was a final goodbye. It made me feel thankful. I am thankful to each and every troop that fought for our freedom, something that at times, I completely forget how much of a sacrifice that was. I felt that much prouder to be Canadian.
As I exited the CNE that day, I took the emotions I experienced with me. I will remember. And as long as we all remember, then history can never forget.