A huge cross-generational crowd that flooded the front lawn of Ontario’s legislature for Remembrance Day inspired faith in one Second World War veteran that the struggles of the past will not be forgotten.

Retired Maj.-Gen. Richard Rohmer thanked Canadians for their reverence and dedication to veterans from the First World War to Afghanistan, and those who never made it home from the conflicts.

His address was periodically drowned out by the booms of a 21-gun salute that rang high above Ontario’s Veterans’ Memorial Wall. After the ceremony, Rohmer said he was confident youth would help pass the memories of Second World War veterans to future generations.

“It’s very important for old fellows like me to be recognized,” he said. “The reality is that they will remember because of these ceremonies that are growing as we get older in size and importance.”

About 163,450 Canadian Second World War veterans are still alive, but with an average age of 86, their numbers are dwindling — along with their reservoir of memories from the war.

Premier Dalton McGuinty said that on Remembrance Day, “we honour those who have done their duty, by doing ours.”

“On behalf of an Ontario family 13 million strong, it is my great honour to thank all those who stood on guard and my solemn duty, along with everyone here, to say: We will not forget.”

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