Lest we forget

I hate writing that subject line. It seems so trite now, so overused. But, for many, it means so much.

My great grandfather, who died when I was 14 years old, fought in both world wars.

I remember visiting him in Italy and he would entertain his grandchildren with, what is in retrospect, horrific stories.

Because of my great grandfather I am free, as are millions of people around the world.

Luckily my great grandfather survived those wars. He died at 94, and I can only imagine the life that he lived.

Today I would like to remember him, and all those men and women who paid the ulitmate sacrifice so that I, as a gay man, can be free to live my life as I choose.

Although gay rights took a long time to achieve in Canada, it is because of the defence of freedom, of our way of life, that we eventually got there. We can’t forget those little bits of progress that made our lives so much easier today.

I think sometimes people often forget what service to your country means. Had we lost the second world war, for instance, our lives would look very different today.

We must always defend freedom of speech, freedom of expression, freedom of choice. Always.

So, thank you to those selfless, altruistic individuals who risk their lives for that.

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