COVID-conscious Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony goes without a hitch

An organizer of the event makes sure the wreaths are lined up just so at the cenotaph at Lake Cowichan for the Remembrance Day ceremony in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)An organizer of the event makes sure the wreaths are lined up just so at the cenotaph at Lake Cowichan for the Remembrance Day ceremony in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
An organizer of the event makes sure the wreaths are lined up just so at the cenotaph at Lake Cowichan for the Remembrance Day ceremony in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
Brightly coloured wreaths were pre-laid at the Lake Cowichan cenotaph for the Remembrance Day event in 2020, due to COVID-19 restrictions. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)Brightly coloured wreaths were pre-laid at the Lake Cowichan cenotaph for the Remembrance Day event in 2020, due to COVID-19 restrictions. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
A chaplain says a few words during the Remembrance Day ceremony at Lake Cowichan in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)A chaplain says a few words during the Remembrance Day ceremony at Lake Cowichan in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
A colour party was one of the parts of the ceremony that remained the same in spite of COVID-19 restrictions that significantly shrank the Remembrance Day ceremony at Lake Cowichan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)A colour party was one of the parts of the ceremony that remained the same in spite of COVID-19 restrictions that significantly shrank the Remembrance Day ceremony at Lake Cowichan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
The head of the colour party for the Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)The head of the colour party for the Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony in 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
The colour party marches a short distance to the cenotaph in Lake Cowichan at the Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)The colour party marches a short distance to the cenotaph in Lake Cowichan at the Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
The lone bagpiper takes a turn in front of the cenotaph at the Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)The lone bagpiper takes a turn in front of the cenotaph at the Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
The lone bagpiper takes a turn in front of the cenotaph at the Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)The lone bagpiper takes a turn in front of the cenotaph at the Lake Cowichan Remembrance Day ceremony on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
A Legion member stands at attention during the Remembrance Day ceremony in Lake Cowichan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)A Legion member stands at attention during the Remembrance Day ceremony in Lake Cowichan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)
A photograph is taken to commemorate the event during the Remembrance Day ceremony at Lake Cowichan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)A photograph is taken to commemorate the event during the Remembrance Day ceremony at Lake Cowichan on Nov. 11, 2020. (Andrea Rondeau/Gazette)

The Remembrance Day service in Lake Cowichan was far from normal on Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Lake Cowichan Legion had requested people to stay away from the annual event, which usually draws a large crowd to pay their respects to those who lost their lives in the First and Second World Wars, the Korean War, and other smaller conflicts.

However, pre-laid wreaths still brought a splash of colour to the cenotaph, as a colour party, led by a lone bagpiper, marched to the monument. The Lake Cowichan Tenors led the sprinkling of spectators in singing ‘O Canada’ and ‘God Save the Queen’, and a chaplain spoke a few words to commemorate the occasion.

Though smaller than usual, it was a moving ceremony, and residents were asked to tune in live online.

Masks were the name of the game, and were worn by the participants, removed only when speaking or singing, and most of the spectators also complied with the masking request, as well as spreading out to distance from one another at the outdoor venue.

Remembrance Day