Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Tomb of The Unknown Soldier

When I first visited Ottawa (about nine years ago) I had an entire day to myself. I was staying with a friend who lived along the Rideau Canal but he had to work so I set off to explore Ottawa, walking along the Canal (beautiful, btw) until I eventually got to the end by the Locks and then headed up towards the Parliament Buildings. Between that point and where I was going I came across the National War Memorial and of course, the Tomb of The Unknown Soldier, who had been buried there just the year before (repatriated home from the Vimy Ridge burial grounds in France).

When I came upon the Tomb I was ill prepared for the feelings that overcame me; feelings that ran the gamut from sorrow to thankfulness and finally to brotherhood and kinship. I sat beside his Tomb for a couple of hours, just sitting and thinking about who this person must have been and what his life meant - both at the time he gave it for our country and now, to me (to all of us really).

I could not visit Ottawa without visiting this old soldier again. He may not have a name and we may not ever really know who he is but we do know that he gave us everything in the hopes that we would continue to live free in this world as Canadians. I owe him everything.

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