Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Acting PM calls for greater recognition and knowledge of local war veterans

PRESS RELEASE: As he addressed the Annual Remembrance Day ceremony of the Royal Commonwealth Ex-Services League, on Sunday November 12th 2017, Acting Prime Minister Honourable Guy Joseph, stressed the need for all Saint Lucians to be more knowledgeable about our country’s role in the wars of history.

Photos of service men and women
Photos of service men and women

The ceremony took place at the Official Residence of the Prime Minister, following the laying of wreaths at memorials throughout Castries, including Derek Walcott Square, George V Park and the Choc Cemetery.

Said Minister Joseph: “I am truly humbled to be in the company of our ex-service men and women and their families and to have taken part in the ceremonies of remembrance.”

The Acting Prime Minister noted that not enough is known, especially by our young people, about the brave men and women from Saint Lucia and the West Indies.

Acting Prime Minister Lays Wreath at Choc Cemetery
Acting Prime Minister Lays Wreath at Choc Cemetery

“We had faithful, brave Saint Lucians who put their lives on the line to allow us to be born in a part of the world where freedom is something we can treasure,” noted Minister Joseph. “We did not inherit that by our own doing. It was these brave soldiers who went out and risked everything to allow us to enjoy this freedom.”

Minister Joseph recalled his school days of wearing a Poppy, stating: “Whenever this time of year came I remember as a child we bought the flower and dropped the money in tin. But the true essence of what it represented was not well taught and I believe that we need to reset the button. Our children need to know, not just by the Poppy, but to know the names of our ex-service members; to understand that the freedom that we now enjoy must never be taken for granted because some people secured it with their own blood. As a country we have a responsibility. If we do not know our history we are likely to repeat the mistakes of the past.”

Governor General lays wreath at Derek Walcott Square
Governor General lays wreath at Derek Walcott Square

The Acting Prime Minister pledged the support of the Government of Saint Lucia in keeping the memory of servicemen alive and added: “On this Remembrance Day, we salute you, we appreciate your service and we will continue to honour you and ensure that your stories live on in our history.”

He also encouraged all Saint Lucians to support the Poppy Appeal year round.


  1. Saint Lucia was basically the only country in the Americas under attack. Two Allied ships were sank at Castries harbour by a U-boat which was heading to Martinique, due to the fact that France had surrendered, and some officials in Martinique were sympathetic to the Nazis. So I was told growing up…but I could be wrong.

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