Ronald Cox has made the November 11th march down to the Nelson Cenotaph for seven decades. In sombre formation, joining other veterans from different eras of service, he has passed by onlookers who have come to pay their respects to those who died and those who sacrificed.
Few of those who stand silently along the streets and in the plaza in front of City Hall know his true story of service and courage. Cox is simply another aging face amongst the many we stand to honour.
And that’s completely fine with Cox. He’s a humble man who survived a wartime experience few today can even comprehend.
On today’s front page you can read about him. This week, Star reporter Greg Nesteroff sat down with the 92-year-old at his Front Street home to listen to him recount his tale. It’s one of bravery in battle, good fortune in timing and a life post-WWII well lived.
It’s difficult to get to the end of the story without a lump in your throat. Though his is a happy ending, it gives you a much better understanding of just how much is lost in war for those not as fortunate as Cox.
Though somewhat reluctant to share his wartime tale, we thank him for being so gracious. Knowing his story makes us appreciate the world we live in today that much more.
Of course Ronald Cox’s story is just one of many this nation will mark on Sunday. All across the land, Canadians will gather to remember. Despite busy lives, it’s vital we continue to take that time in what is often times nasty pre-winter weather.
Our veterans march with a few more wrinkles every year and the details of their experiences become a little bit more fuzzy. But their stories are always just as important to remember. Without them, Canada would be a much different place.