Vernon students participate in ‘No Stone Left’ Alone initative

It’s a simple gesture but to hundreds of soldiers and their families across Canada, the placing of a poppy on the headstone of a fallen comrade is a symbol of respect, and more importantly, a reminder to veterans that we will remember them.

Related: Vernon students remember fallen soldiers at No Stone Left Alone ceremony

Related: Remembrance Day to remember

Despite the rain, about 75 Grade 7 students from École Beairsto Elementary and Harwood Elementary School School participated in “No Stone Left Alone” commemoration event in Vernon Thursday, Nov. 1. Following an opening ceremony, students divided up into groups and placed 400 poppies on military gravesites throughout Pleasant Valley Cemetery. This nationwide initiative seeks to educate students while also honouring and recognizing the sacrifices Canadian military men and women made while serving Canada.

The goal of the event is to educate students while honouring and recognizing the sacrifices that Canadian military men and women made while serving Canada. In November, ‘No Stone Left Alone’ ceremonies across Canada have students place the symbolic poppy on military headstones in Canadian fields of honour.

Vernon’s ceremony, organized by Lawrna Myers, of the Vernon and District Family History Society, saw students from two local schools gather to pay their respects to fallen veterans in a brief remembrance service before placing more than 400 poppies on local military grave sites at Pleasant Valley Cemetery.

“This is what 70 per cent of World War One was like, so it’s very appropriate that the weather is cold and damp today,” said Dennis Windsor of the Royal Canadian Legion.

Windsor led the Remembrance Service in an effort to remind students of the sacrifices veterans from Vernon and across Canada gave up for our freedom.

Students were accompanied by volunteers from Vernon & District Family History Society, Royal Canadian Legion Branch 25 – Vernon and the British Columbia Dragoons. Starting around 10 a.m. the ceremony included remembrance service and a ceremonial laying of the wreath before students sectioned off and begun laying poppies on grave sites throughout the park. First, the students read the name of the veteran from the headstone, place the poppy, step back and pause before moving to the next site.

“The placing of poppies is the Legion’s act of remembrance. While we mourn their deaths, we remember that their spirit, sacrifice and accomplishments are woven into the fabric of Canada,” said Windsor. “The actions today [laying of the poppies], define the true meaning of remembrance.”

The community response to the event has been tremendous. Many veterans and families have reached out to thank the students for participating in the event.

“Thank you so much. My grandparents are buried in the veterans section of Pleasant Valley. I’m so proud of my grandfather’s service in both the first and second world wars. Thank you for honouring their service,” wrote one woman in the comment section of the photos the Morning Star shared on Facebook.

“Thank you so much, my two Great Uncles and dad are in Veterans section,” commented another.

Though it is only the third year Vernon has participated, 2018 marked the 8th annual commemoration ceremonies for No Stone Left Alone Memorial Foundation.

Related: Okanagan Symphony Orchestra to hold performances for Remembrance Day

Related: Bad idea to trot out Santa Claus before Remembrance Day

Related: In Remembrance

To report a typo, email:

Follow me on Twitter @BrieChar
Email me

The No Stone Left Alone was launched in 2011 in Edmonton. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
Ruby May Kaltiainen, grade 7, participated in the event. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
This is the third year Vernon has participated in the national event. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
The ceremony is meant to provide students with an authentic experience that creates knowledge, understanding and appreciation of those who serve and of the sacrifice of Canada’s military. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
Nai’a Fellingham places a symbolic poppy on military headstones. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
The event began with a remembrance ceremony at Pleasant Valley Cemetery in Vernon. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
Students across Canada participate in this remembrance event. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)
The placing of poppies is a symbolic representation of remembrance. (Brieanna Charlebois/ Morning Star)

Just Posted

Keep an eye on this up-and-coming Vernon director

15-year-old Bowen O’Brien celebrates filmmaking successes.

Visiting author gets personal

Keri Lefave will be reading from her book, Unfinished, at the Vernon Public Library on Saturday, April 27th at 11 a.m.

Vernon poet launches new book

Kerry Gilbert’s new work, a cautionary tale through the guise of little red riding hood, will launch at the Caetani Cultural Centre’s Studio Gallery April 26 at 7 p.m.

Produce a home-made cooking show with kids for a chance to win $1,000

“People are really hungry to explore food and to begin cooking again.”

Egg hunts take over Vernon

Among the hunts include the 14 annual Schnare’s Massive Egg Hunt.

Update: Fire destroys Peachland home on Somerset Avenue

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Seattle’s 4-20 ‘protestival’ enjoys tolerance, some support – and B.C. could do the same

Seattle’s Hempfest a large-scale occasions with vendors, prominent musical acts and thousands of attendees

Parents say Austrian climber missing in Banff National Park ‘lived his dream’

David Lama, Hansjorg Auer and American climber Jess Roskelley have been missing since Wednesday

Six months after legalization, high prices and supply issues boost illicit pot market

It has been six months since Canada became the first industrialized country to legalize recreational cannabis

Local Kelowna project tabs restaurant workers for industry fundraiser

The 2nd Hungry Games invites fundraises for local charities

Most Read