Yunmin Lee & Albert Radu / Staff reporters

On November 8, students and staff attended the Remembrance Day assembly.

The event began with a cadet march, led by piper Coibre Hutchinson, grade 12. This was followed by O Canada by vocal jazz lead by Edward Trovato, The Final Post trumpet performance by Liam Northcott, grade 12, and a moment of silence.

Smooth transitions were made possible by the MCs of the assembly, Theophyla Balabin, grade 11, and Emily Zhang, grade 12.

Throughout the assembly, a slideshow assembled by Zhang, showing veterans, images from war, and poppies were played.

Following the moment of silence was a performance of Amazing Grace by piper Hutchinson.

Invited Veteran James Robertson gave a speech about his experiences. Robertson was one of many Canadian troops deployed in Afghanistan to fight extremist group Al Qaeda.

“[As] soldier finding bombmakers, [I] was in the heart of the Taliban” said Robertson.

During his speech, Robertson gave examples to help students understand the impact of war.

“World War One killed 20 million people. World War Two killed 50 to 80 million. The population of Canada is 38 million,” said Robertson.

Nearing the end of his speech, Robertson explained that the start of wars “[are] the diminishment of love and self-respect”.

The speech ended with Robertson’s resonating remark on the true meaning of Remembrance Day. “The opposite of war is not 4peace. It is civilization. The very things you take for granted,” concluded Robertson.

Following the speech, Karen Learmonth, English teacher, introduced students to perform spoken poetry.

Hiva Hosseininasab, Kalen Maurice, Hannah Cho, David Whiting, Paige Blu, Morgan Morrow, Aisha Garcia, Kailey Barber, and Victor Wang, all grade 10, were the authors and performers of the poetry.

The spoken poetry ended as concert choir lead by Marquis Byrd, student music teacher, entered the gym to perform Agnus Dei, accompanied by student pianist Amanda Ding, grade 12.

The assembly ended with a piano performance of “Gymnopedie no. 1” by Lucas Hung.