Veterans’ remembrance crosses in the Legion section of Mountain View Cemetery. (M. Bieling photo)

Veterans’ remembrance crosses in the Legion section of Mountain View Cemetery. (M. Bieling photo)

Crosses will be placed in Cowichan in honour of veterans, in spite of pandemic

Organizers have been asked to avoid holding the cross placements as public events.

As with so many events this year, the ongoing COVID-19 situation will mean changes to the Cowichan Valley’s November tradition of placing veterans’ remembrance crosses decorated with cedar and a poppy on the graves of veterans in our local cemeteries.

Unfortunately, the Air, Sea, St. John Ambulance and other cadets who normally do the placements and salutes will not be able to participate, and organizers have been asked to avoid holding the cross placements as public events.

Despite these restrictions, organizers are pleased to announce that the cross placements will continue for 2020, with parent, cemetery and community volunteers stepping in to decorate and set up crosses. The process will be complete at all locations by Nov. 5, and everyone is encouraged to visit one of the community’s cemeteries to see the crosses in place through Remembrance Day and the end of the month.

The Cowichan Valley cemeteries where cross placements will take place include: All Saints’ Anglican Church Cemetery, Westholme (8530 Chemainus Road, Chemainus); Heritage Partnership Museum, Mill Bay Methodist/United Church Cemetery (2851 Church Way, Mill Bay); Mountain View Cemetery (6493 Somenos Road, Duncan); St. Andrew’s Anglican Church, Cowichan Station (2475 Koksilah Road, Duncan); St. Francis Xavier Roman Catholic Church (790 Kilmalu Road, Mill Bay); St. Mary’s Anglican Church, Somenos (6309 Somenos Road, Duncan); Shawnigan Community Cemetery (1825-1855 Munsie Road, Shawnigan Lake).

Other area cemeteries where volunteers place remembrance crosses are St. Peter’s Anglican Church Cemetery, Quamichan (5800 Church Road, Duncan); St. John the Baptist Anglican Church (3295 Cobble Hill Rd, Cobble Hill); and St. Michael and All Angels Anglican Cemetery, Chemainus Cemetery (9489 Chemainus Road, Chemainus). Their parish offices will have further details regarding their 2020 events.

To add the name and burial site of a veteran interred in one of the Cowichan Valley’s cemeteries, please contact Mike Bieling at 250-748-5031 or oldcemeterian@shaw.ca.

Remembrance Day