Remembrance Day | 1. Introduction

The following is a Remembrance Day aide-memoire on how the Canadian Armed Forces conducts Remembrance Day and related ceremonies. The aim of this aide-memoire is to provide a general and historical background that we hope, will answer questions or disperse misconceptions on certain aspects of remembrance ceremonies. An example of this is the misconception concerning “ownership” of the National flag. The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) does not regulate the use, display or direct protocol concerning the Canadian flag as this is the responsibility of the Heritage Canada.

This aide-memoire has been written to include the Remembrance Day ceremonies, both large and small, which the CAF itself directs or is asked to participate in. The excerpts contained within are considered the framework by which the CAF constructs remembrance ceremonies which are similar in scope but have specific differences both in Canada and abroad. These excerpts are guidelines only, meaning that it is possible to tailor the remembrance ceremony around these basic guidelines. However, the factors of just who will be in attendance, the availability of resources, locations and local laws will set the parameters of the ceremony to be followed. All that being said, some excerpts are non-negotiable as they have been set forth by “king, country, tradition and proclamation” and are carried out under the authority of the Office of the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS).

Most of the information and references utilized within have come from our three Canadian Forces Publications (CFP). They are freely available on the Canadian Forces Identity System webpage at this time. Amendments to the references from the CFP contained within have been highlighted in blue and will be reflected in the updated versions.

Other historical information and policies used within were compiled utilizing many sources freely available on the internet and due regard is given to any authors of such material. As well, historical documentation within national and international libraries was utilized whenever possible. There will be almost certainly, someone who may have a different understanding of or have access to better information regarding the material contained within.

We reiterate that the aim of this aide-memoire is to assist all parties in the better understanding of our history, traditions and the modern ceremonial practices of today; in so that the veterans are honoured at the highest level. LEST WE FORGET.

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