GUADALAJARA, Nov. 11 Canadian team athletes and coaches marked Remembrance Day in Guadalajara, Mexico today in a respectful ceremony at their headquarters in the Paralympic Village, one day before the official start of the 2011 Parapan American Games.
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The ceremony, organized by the Embassy of Canada in Guadalajara, brought together Canadian Team members with Canadian veteran Leo Henneberry, a pilot who served in Korea and Vietnam, as well as having a long diplomatic career.
"Canada's veterans represent freedom, courage and equality," said Jordan Bridal, Paralympic Team Manager and master of ceremonies. "These values are also inherent in the Paralympic Movement and our team joins all Canadians in honouring our veterans' sacrifices today."
The modern Paralympic movement started after World War II, when Dr. Ludwig Guttman organized an archery competition for injured soldiers in 1948 in Stoke Mandeville, England. What started with one sport has grown in to an international multi-sport movement.
Since 2006, the Canadian Paralympic Committee has partnered with the Canadian Forces, helping facilitate athletic opportunities for ill and injured military personnel some of whom have gone on to compete for Canada as Paralympians.
"The relationship between the Canadian Paralympic Committee and Canadian Forces' Soldier On program is special, originating from the military origins of the Paralympic movement," said Major Jay Feyko. "By collaborating to provide ill and injured military personnel with opportunities to participate in parasport, we honour and pay homage to the sacrifice of members of the Canadian Forces who preserve and protect our rights and freedoms."
The short ceremony gave the Canadian Team a chance to reflect on those who have sacrificed to defend our country and its values. As part of the ceremony, Canadian Team athlete in archery, Lyne Tremblay (Magog, QC), read Acte du Souvenir and wheelchair basketball player David Durepos (Fredericton, NB), read For the Fallen.
For more information about Team Canada in Guadalajara, including all results, plus photos and videos available for download, please visit www.paralympic.ca/guadalajara2011
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For more information, please contact:
Soldier On Manager | Gestionnaire du programme Sans limites
Manager, Media Relations
Canadian Paralympic Committee
T: (in Guadalajara - Nov. 6-22):
011 52 331 6009 399