Smiths Falls celebrates planting of Vimy Oak at Cenotaph

May 19, 2017 by

DSC_4774Thursday was an historic day in Smiths Falls, as students from Smiths Falls Collegiate Institute gathered with dignitaries and the community to plant a Vimy Oak at the Smiths Falls Cenotaph.

In spite of high winds the tree planting ceremony went off without a hitch.

The event was organized and run by three  key students. Katherine Poag emceed the event with Jordan Drummond and Ben Seward providing the history and logistics behind the two-year project.

They were joined by Smiths Falls Mayor Shawn Pankow and MPP Randy Hillier as well as Royal Canadian Legion President Wayne Foster Branch 95.

Each of the dignitaries spoke a few words and congratulated the students on their efforts in bringing one of the 100 oaks that will be planted in communities around the country to commemorate the Canadian veterans who fought in the First World War, and in particular the four Canadian divisions who took part in the battle of Vimy Ridge.

It was an incredibly moving ceremony and at its conclusion Poag invited the substantial audience to participate in the planting by gathering soil to cover the roots of the young sapling (pictured).

Following the ceremony, attendees were invited to a reception complete with musical entertainment provided by high school students and hosted at the Legion Hall.