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Remembrance Day: Sault mother remembers son who died in Afghanistan (19 photos)

Annual ceremony held at Cenotaph for all who served, sacrificed

“November 11th is a hard day for me. January 16th too, of course...war has touched the lives of so many people. The loss of my son has been the hardest thing I’ve ever had to go through.”

That from the Sault’s Donna Crosson, whose son - Sault native Sergeant John Wayne Faught - was killed in action Jan. 16, 2010 while serving his country in Afghanistan.

Crosson, who was chosen once again by Royal Canadian Legion Branch 25 to be recognized as the Sault’s Silver Cross Mother, spoke to SooToday following Thursday’s Remembrance Day ceremony at the Cenotaph in front of the Sault Ste. Marie Courthouse.

This Remembrance Day was especially difficult for Crosson, as the free world witnessed the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan this year, the last troops from a coalition of nations, including Canada, who fought a long and bloody war to bring democracy to that troubled Middle East country.

“I feel terrible that all their hard work and my son’s loss of his life is for naught. The Taliban are in control and they're going to do the same thing they did before and I feel pretty strongly about that. I don’t think we should’ve pulled out like we did,” Crosson said.

The coalition of nations of which Canada was a part, however, did highlight the need to bring freedom to civilians - especially women - in countries with oppressive regimes, Crosson said.

“They raised awareness of how the rest of the world lives. We don’t all live like they do, thank God...they did make a difference.”

This Remembrance Day marked the 100th anniversary of the poppy as a Remembrance Day emblem.

“We’ve been organizing and commemorating our veterans for 93 of those years,” said Helen Stewart, Royal Canadian Legion Branch 25 president, addressing an audience of veterans, Legion officials, Canadian Armed Forces and law enforcement agency representatives and the general public gathered at the Cenotaph.

Of veterans who served - many paying the ultimate sacrifice - in Canada’s wars, Stewart said “these people earned us our freedom.”

“(Let us be certain) the rights and freedoms and responsibilities that have been bestowed on us (fought for and preserved by veterans) remain sacred,” Stewart said.

Sault Mayor Christian Provenzano, Sault MPP Ross Romano and Sault MP Terry Sheehan were in attendance Thursday, each laying a wreath at the Cenotaph, Provenzano delivering a speech in honour of veterans who have served the community and Canada as a whole.

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Darren Taylor

About the Author: Darren Taylor

Darren Taylor is a news reporter and photographer in Sault Ste Marie. He regularly covers community events, political announcements and numerous board meetings. With a background in broadcast journalism, Darren has worked in the media since 1996.
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