Student receives provincial award and national accolade for Remembrance Day poem
Rossland’s own Sophie DeRosa has earned a top spot among Canada’s young literati for her poem, “A Day to Remember Our Soldiers,” that she submitted to the annual literary and poster contest sponsored by the Royal Canadian Legion.
Poppy chairperson Bobbi Lafond of Rossland’s Legion Branch No. 14 was “jumping for joy” at the big announcement that DeRosa’s poem had earned first place in the “junior poem” category of the BC-Yukon Command, and the poem went on to earn an honourable mention at the Dominion (national) level.
“This young lady entered her poem and it won first at Legion No. 14, then at the [West Kootenay] Zone, and now she’s won first at the Pacific Command,” Lafond said, elated.
Zone Commander Bill McGuire joined Lafond and Legion No. 14 president Doug Halladay at a brief award ceremony held Tuesday morning at RSS.
“It’s a great achievement,” McGuire said. “Keep up the good work.”
When the cheers of the other students in the room had quieted down, McGuire reminded them that the poster and literary contest runs every year, and there are “great rewards for good work.”
Halladay added, “Sophie just picked up a cheque for $125,” on top of winnings she had earned at the branch and zone levels.
Halladay said the distinction of an honourable mention set DeRosa at the “top of the pack,” among the best young writers from across the country who entered the competition. DeRosa’s name will be published in this year’s booklet of national winners.
The annual contest is open to all students from Grades 1 to 12, and has run for many years to foster the tradition of remembrance among Canadians.
A Day To Remember Our Soldiers ~ Sophie DeRosa
The soldiers gave their lives to defend
They say a prayer for war to end
Whether fighting in desert sand, rain or mud
Landscapes soaking up their blood
Another war, lives turned to dust
The only thing they had was trust
They lay in graves so far from home
Their families shattered, now all alone
All those courageous young men who took part
And bravely defended us with all their heart
Remember those who fought before
Remember those still at war
On November 11 and every day
Be thinking of the soldiers in every way
As our anthem plays, sing clear and loud
And on Remembrance Day, wear poppies proud
We thank all Veterans for their choice
And perhaps one day we will all rejoice.