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CORNWALL, Ontario – People of all ages gathered at the Cornwall Square on Sunday, Nov. 27 to remember loved ones and watch as the traditional Memory Tree Lighting Ceremony took place.

Shannon Ferguson, Special to TC Media.

CORNWALL, Ontario – People of all ages gathered at the Cornwall Square on Sunday, Nov. 27 to remember loved ones and watch as the traditional Memory Tree Lighting Ceremony took place.

The Bereaved Families of Ontario Memory Tree stands near the west staircase on the first level, outside of Sears, and honours those who have passed away.

Gisèle Roy, Facilitator and Coordinator of Bereaved Families of Ontario-Cornwall, played a big part in helping the day run smoothly and explained why the Memory Tree is so important.

“It’s a source of comfort for people. It’s very symbolic and people come back year after year to add their memory tag to it”.

In its 20th year, the tree has become a fixture at the Cornwall Square during the holiday season. People are able to write down the name of a loved one on a special tag and hang it on a branch, eventually filling the entire tree with names of those deeply missed.

“The tradition is still very much alive and today’s turnout is great. We are so happy to hold a special lighting of this tree year after year” said Roy.

The Centennial Choir filled the air with carols throughout the ceremony and heartfelt speeches were given, recognizing the difficulties that many people who have lost loved ones face during the holidays.

Flo Britton lost her daughter, Candace, in a car accident 13 years ago and has attended the ceremony in her memory every year since.

“We have a lot of good memories that we cherish and days like today help us move forward” she said. “This day is always very touching. It’s heartwarming. It’s just so nice and so heartfelt”.

The Memory Tree will be on display until Dec. 24 and BFO staff will be on hand with information for dealing with grief during the holiday season.

BFO will also be holding its Annual Candlelight Remembrance Service at Knox St. Paul Church on Wednesday, Dec. 14 at 7:00 p.m. It is open to the public.

Source: Loved Ones Remembered at Memory Tree Lighting | Cornwall Seaway News

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