By Mike Renzella
The Haldimand Press
DUNNVILLE—On Saturday, September 11, 2021 a large crowd gathered in Wingfield Park to participate in the Flags of Remembrance ceremony honouring military veterans and first responders with a display of 158 flags, many of which are adorned with plaques recognizing local heroes.
“We would like to thank all of you who sponsored a flag, and those who made donations, as well as all in attendance. We couldn’t have done this without all of you,” said Brent O’Connor, one of the event’s organizers.
The event fell on the 20-year anniversary of 9/11, during which many first responders died in the line of duty.
“Everyone’s lives were changed forever. The war began and at the end of it in 2014, Canada had lost 158 men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice,” reminisced O’Connor. “May we never forget all those who made the sacrifice both past and present.”
Dunnville Legion president John Wood spoke to the assembled crowd as well.
“We must ensure that our children and grandchildren are aware of the heroes who have represented Canada, lest we forget,” said Wood. “I would like to thank past and present men and women who put their lives at risk for the good of all. You certainly deserve to be recognized.”
MPP Toby Barrett was not surprised that Dunnville was chosen as one of six locations across the country to host the Flags of Remembrance, noting how the town was the first in the county to recognize veterans with banners on display yearly.
Barrett added, “These flags look fantastic.”
The flags themselves were unveiled at 2 p.m., with 40 of them sponsored by
local residents who were on-hand to personally unveil their flags and the plaque honouring their loved one. The flags will remain on display until Remembrance Day.
Unfortunately, despite pleas from event organizers to respect the display and not tamper with it, it appears that a flag and pole was stolen from the site less than a day after it was unveiled, according to a post made to the social media group Dunnville Talks.
There is still plenty of time to purchase a plaque in honour of a loved one who was either a member of the military or a first responder.
To sponsor a flag, reach out to O’Connor by phone at 905-719-8506 or through the Dunnville Legion at 905-774-5942.