A Brock student studying abroad honoured Canadians killed during the First World War by organizing a candlelight vigil on Christmas Eve.
Colby Farrell – who is currently in France as part of a Rotary exchange program – launched a fundraising campaign on Dec. 16 to place a candle at the graves of those that gave the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
The initiative raised more than $900, surpassing its goal, with nearly 350 candles placed in two cemeteries.
“Because of the sacrifices made by our Canadian soldiers 100 years ago, we are able to live in freedom and peace. That is why I am pulling my community of Iwuy together, here in France, on Christmas Eve to light a candle beside each grave in our Canadian cemetery,” reads his post on GoFundMe.
“This shining candle serves to commemorate and remember those who had, numerous times, missed Christmas and missed time with their families. These fathers, sons, and brothers will never return home so let’s create a reminder to demonstrate that they are forever not forgotten by lighting a candle.”
Farrell decided to launch the project after learning about a similar initiative in the Netherlands.
“I saw that the Holten Canadian War Cemetery in Netherlands was doing this. After becoming aware of this initiative, I thought that the idea of lighting a candle in the act of remembering the sacrifices made by our Canadian soldiers 100 years ago was the perfect way of commemorating,” he said.