Service of Remembrance marks centennial of Armistice

One hundred years ago – on November 11, 1918 – the Armistice of Compiègne was signed and came into force at 11:00 a.m. Paris time. It was believed and hoped that this marked the end of the “war to end all wars.”

On November 7, 2018, Trinity College School students, staff and special guests joined in the Memorial Chapel to mark the annual Service of Remembrance. In doing so, we pledged to work towards the peace which has been so elusive over the past 100 years.

Led by Major The Revd. Canon Don Aitchison, chaplain of TCS and the 32 Canadian Brigade Group, the service included a beautiful performance by the Chapel Choir under the direction of Mr. Randy Mills. A group of prefects and faculty member Jeff Biggar ’03 told the personal stories of some of the TCS Old Boys and one master who made the ultimate sacrifice during World War I.

Following the chapel service, the congregation moved outside to the Memorial Cross. The outdoor portion of the service included the playing of The Last Post and Reveille by Grade 12 student Ethan Burnside. Prefect Sydney Keiser recited John McCrae’s In Flanders Fields and Headmaster Grainger read from the Book of Remembrance, which includes the names of all TCS Old Boys lost in war. We were grateful to have Ms. Janet Fox, president of the TCS Parents’ Guild, in attendance to lay a ceremonial wreath at the base of the cross, while Ms. Heather McClure laid a wreath on behalf of the faculty and students.

At the end of the service, Junior School students laid poppies on the small wooden crosses surrounding the Memorial Cross. The crosses are replicas of those made by TCS master Charles “Chinny” Scott, constructed each time the School learned of the death of an alumnus or master during the Second World War.

Among the guests joining us for Remembrance Day was former TCS governor, Ken Jewett, accompanied by his wife, Edith, and his sons, Graeme ’77 P’14 and James ’83. Mr. Jewett is the founder of Maple Leaves Forever, an organization that supports the planting of native Canadian maple trees in southern Ontario. At TCS, Mr. Jewett has partnered in our tree planting programs and, most recently, donated a stand of trees planted last month in memory of the TCS Old Boys and master killed in service during World War I (click here to read more).

This year, the School once again took part in The World Remembers project (www.theworldremembers.org), a global initiative to mark the centenary of World War I. TCS began participating in the first year of the project, 2014, when the names of all war dead from 1914 were displayed on a screen in the narthex of the chapel. The tradition carried on this fall, the final year of the project, with more than one million names displayed between September 12th and November 11th, including 31 TCS Old Boys. This represents those who died in 1918 as well as those who perished in the years immediately following the war due wounds or disease suffered in service.