In remembrance of Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent and Corporal Nathan Cirillo

I rise on behalf of the Yukon Liberal Party to pay tribute to democracy and to those who defend it. We may be far geographically from the events of the last week, but that doesn't diminish their impact here. These events are a shared and a national tragedy.

We have been very fortunate as a country that so few men and women have had to sacrifice their lives on Canadian soil to defend our democracy. The targets of yesterday’s attack were symbols of our nationalism and they were meant to rock us to the core. What we must not forget is that at that core, we are a very proud democracy, a welcoming and peaceful nation, a country that has open arms, open minds and open hearts. We cannot allow that to change, as these are the values and the ideals upon which we must rely in those days ahead.

When looking at the pictures of the reservist killed in Ottawa, I can’t help but think about our lifestyles and how we are the exception to the rule, Mr. Speaker. We are so privileged as Canadians. We are privileged to be able to work and to play. Sometimes we forget that most people on this planet don’t have the same rights and freedoms that we enjoy. We have earned these freedoms, absolutely, but we should never forget the men and women who have given us these privileges.

As we prepare for another military action, I wonder and I hope: Are we prepared to support our veterans as they return from active duty? Our thoughts and our prayers are with the families and the friends of the victims of yesterday’s tragic events, including those of Corporal Nathan Cirillo and as well, those of Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent who died on Monday. I would like to extend my sincere gratitude on behalf of my constituents, on behalf of the Yukon Liberal Party and all Yukoners to the brave men and women who selflessly and courageously serve and protect our great nation. Thank you.