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Students trek to cemeteries to honour veterans with poppy-painted stones

Students from Cedar Hill and Rockheights middle schools took part in the No Stone Left Alone ceremonies at St. Luke’s Cemetery and God’s Acre Veterans Cemetery

About 500 Grade 6-8 students from Cedar Hill Middle School walked the short distance to St. Luke’s Cemetery Thursday afternoon to place stones with poppies painted on them at the graves of veterans.

It was the second straight year the school took part in the special No Stone Left Alone event, said principal Maryanne Trofimuk.

At the same time across the city, Rockheights Middle School students made the trek to God’s Acre Veterans Cemetery to also lay stones.

Military members were on hand for both school groups, and the Saanich police department provided Cedar Hill Middle students a vehicle escort to the cemetery.

Trofimuk said there are 157 veterans’ graves at the St. Luke’s site. Visiting cemeteries helps students understand why Remembrance Day is marked each year, she said.

“It’s an experience,” Trofimuk said. “It’s not sitting in the gym and watching this all on the big screen. This is coming out and really seeing that there are people that have been laid to rest.

“We do talk about the freedoms that we have because of the commitment that soldiers gave during wartime.”

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