Moment of silence for fallen soldier

“I just thought it would be a nice way to say thank you.”



Amidst the flashing lights and twirling rides of the CNE yesterday, a trumpet played Last Post to honour the latest Canadian soldier to die in Afghanistan.


More than 100 people took a break from CNE revelry to pay their respects at a short ceremony at the CNE’s Canadian Forces display.


“This afternoon we gather to remember a fallen comrade,” Chaplain Phil Ralph told the crowd. “Our thoughts and our prayers are with his family, his friends and his comrades.”

Pte. Simon Longtin, 23, of the Royal 22nd Regiment (Van Doos) of Quebec, died yesterday when the convoy that he was travelling in struck a roadside bomb.

Set to a backdrop of Canadian flags, Ralph said the country’s military has always has a proud tradition “of compassion, caring and commitment.” The vigil was punctuated with a moment of silence.

Capt. Wayne Johnston and Mike McTeague, whose body was shattered in a suicide bombing last September, stepped forward, each breaking the silence to place a poppy on Longtin’s memorial. Soldiers and members of the public echoed their actions.

Cameron Cliff, 12, was one of the first CNE merry-makers to step forward, poppy in hand.

“I just thought it would be a nice way to say thank you. These guys are out fighting for freedom.”