Dedicated in 1939 to remember the over 66,000 Canadian dead from WWI, the War Memorial would be re-dedicated in 1982 to the 44,000 who died in WWII and again in 2014 to those Canadians who had died in other wars and who might die in the future. The Memorial is the focal point of Confederation Park. Bronze depictions of 22 Canadian servicemen and women from all branches of Canada’s WWI forces ate answering the call – “The Great Response of Canada” – to serve King and Country. Peace and Freedom stand atop the arch. The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was added in front of the Memorial in 2000. An unknown Canadian soldier was reburied from his former grave near Vimy Ridge. Sentries march outside from 9 April – the date of the beginning of the Battle of Vimy Ridge – until 10 November. The sentries come from the army, navy, air force, special services, as well as police forces – i.e. RCMP. One of these sentries was killed while on duty 22 October 2014.
When I visited, the Memorial was closed to the public for “major renovation”. It is supposed to be open once again in early November 2016, but that was a couple weeks late for me.
The National War Memorial was originally dedicated in 1939 by King George VI to honour the Canadian war dead of the First World War. It was designed by Vernon March. It features a high 21m arch which encompasses 23 magnificent bronze sculptures that represent the 11 branches of services of the Canadian armed forces that fought during the First World War. At apex of the arch are two winged figures intertwined that are suppose to represent peace and liberty. The memorial has been rededicated two times since to honour the dead from the Second World War, the Korean War, the Second Boer War and the War in Afghanistan.
There are two sentries guarding the memorial from 9am to 5pm daily. They are often dressed in honour guard uniforms. Sadly a madman murdered one of the guards in 2014 sparking a national outrage and much debate about Canada's role in the war on terror.
I have always fell that the National War Memorial is a majestic monument and well worth taking in. It is located just across the street from the Canadian Parliament buildings.
The National War Memorial was unveiled in 1939 to commemorate the response of Canadians in the First World War, has, over the years, come to symbolize the sacrifice of all Canadians who have served Canada in time of war in the cause of peace and freedom. The National War Memorial was officially unveiled by His Majesty King George VI in 1939 in his address to an estimated 100,000 people gathered.
Surmounting the arch through which the armed forces of the nation are pressing forward are the figures of peace and freedom. To win peace and to secure freedom Canadians served during the Great War. For the cause of peace and freedom 60,000 Canadians lost their lives, and a still larger number injured. Thiis sacrifice the National Memorial holds in remembrance for our own and succeeding generations.
The memorial speaks to her world of Canada's heart. Its symbolism has been beautifully adapted to this great end. It has been well named "The Response". One sees at a glance the answer made by Canada when the world's peace was broken and freedom threatened in the fateful years of the Great War. It depicts the zeal with which this country entered the conflict.
The National War Memorial (also known as The Response) stands in Confederation Square.
The memorial, from grade to the tip of the surmounting statue's wings, is approximately 21.34 m (70ft).
The Canadian Tomb of the Unknown Soldier was added to the memorial site and symbolizes the sacrifice made by every Canadian who has died for Cnanda.
We enjoyed the hourly changing on the guard at the War Memorial. Guides were present that shared a lot of information about this monument. We were told that the tomb of the unknown solider contains soil from all provinces in Canada. Symbols of Canada were above the tomb. World War I, II and Korea were identified. 22 soldiers representing branches of the military were cast in bronze. The monument above the arch symbolizes peace and freedom.
The National War Memorial was constructed to commemorate the 60,000 Canadian soldiers who died in the First World War. After a long period works were completed in 1939.
In 1982 the bronze numerals "1939-1945" & "1950-1953"were added to honour the deads from WW2 and the Korean War.
In May 2000 the remains of an unidentified Canadian Soldier who died in World War I, were transported from France and buried in Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at the South-side of the memorial.
At November 11 the Remembrance Day ceremonies are held here annually.
Occasionally heads of states or other government representatives will lay a wreath.
One of the landmarks of Ottawa must be the National War Memorial which commemorates the Canadian soldiers who lost their lives during World War Two. This monument is located just across Parliament Hill and the Fairmont Chateau Laurier hotel. It is also very impressive at night with the lightings on it (see photograph).
Once again, I find myself on the backside. Do you detect a theme here? I seem to mirror these pages often finding myself on the "backside" of life. All I can say is that if the backside of life treats me as well as being on the backside of these views of Ottawa, I'll do just fine!
This memorial is best viewed from the other side and I wasn't sure at the time what I was photographing, so I just zoomed in on something that looked interesting to me and now I have trouble figuring out what it is! Duh! But as I was running short on time and this seemed to be a very busy intersection to cross, I took this picture and took my leave. I'm sure this is covered in other, better tips to this most important Memorial. Check them out!
Every country has a memorial to its war heroes. Well, Canada has also memorialized the process of peace. The peacekeeping monument is the only monument of its kind in the world. Peacekeeping is an important aspect of Canada's national heritage and a reflection its fundamental beliefs. 120 Canadians have lost their lives in peacekeeping missions.
The design of the memorial features three bronze figures, representing members of Canada's Armed Forces, standing on top of this monument. They are perched symbolically on high, converging walls that rise above the debris of war and they are overseeing the process of reconciliation. Markers on the ground commemorate each peacekeeping mission that Canadians have participated in.
Although the United Nations deployed some observer missions in its early years, the term "peacekeeping" did not enter popular use until 1956. The eruption of conflict in the Middle East prompted Lester B. Pearson, then Canadian Secretary of State for External Affairs and later Prime Minister of Canada, to propose the deployment of an international peace force under the UN flag. Since that time there have been over 50 United Nations peacekeeping missions and the number continues to grow.
Dedicated in 1939 in commemmoration of the First World War, the National War Memorial consists of a tall stone arch adorned with metal sculptures. The main work, titled "The Response", depicts a diverse group of soldiers and servicepeople marching forward below the arch; one is mounted, and several tote a gun carriage. The top of the arch features figures representing peace and freedom.
Though made to comemmorate WWI, the memorial also officially remembers the Second World War and Korean War. It also features the Canadian Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, placed in 2000 in front of the memorial.
On November 11 this memorial becomes the focus of the country as people commemorate those who served Canada in times of war and in various peacekeeping missions.
Originally built as a dedication to those who served in the Great War, the memorial was rededicated in 1982 to include those who served in World War 2 and the Korean War.
The angels on top represent Peace and Freedom, while the soldiers under the arch represent the "Great Response" of the hundreds of thousands of soldiers who answered the call to serve in WW1.
From King George's unveiling speech:
"The memorial speaks to her world of Canada's heart. Its symbolism has been beautifully adapted to this great end. It has been well named 'The Response.' One sees at a glance the answer made by Canada when the world's peace was broken and freedom threatened in the fateful years of the Great War. It depicts the zeal with which this country entered the conflict."
Each year the annual Remembrance Day ceremony on November 11th is televised from Ottawa across the nation, commemorating those who gave the supreme sacrifice
Within view of the Chateau and the Parliament lies the cenotaph honouring our war veterans. Whether you've seen it live or on tv for Remembrance Day services, hear about the Unknown Soldier, or are interested in Ottawa's architecture, the memorial is a must-see.