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Remarks

The news of World War I did not reach these small Islands for more than a week after its outbreak on 4 August, 1914, but our response to Britainís decision to fight was unequivocal.

Premier Hon. Alden McLaughin

Published 13th November 2018, 9:39am

Good morning, Each year we gather here to honour, recognize and remember those who died in World Wars I and II and of Lives Lost at Sea and pay respects to our own surviving veterans and seamen who are still vital to our community and country. While God has blessed us with another opportunity to recognize Remembrance Day, today is special as it marks the 100th anniversary of the Armistice, which ended the hostilities of World War I, bringing to an end a very terrible and destructive war. To commemorate this day, the communities of all three of our Islands join the world to celebrate the day the guns fell silent by ringing bells in communities, businesses and churches 11 times in unison. It is a gesture to replicate the joyous tolling of bells that took place in 1918 after being silent for so long. The news of World War I did not reach these small Islands for more than a week after its outbreak on 4 August, 1914, but our response to Britainís decision to fight was unequivocal. At the opening of the Legislative Assembly on 16 September, 1914, the Justices and Vestry passed a unanimous motion vowing unswerving loyalty and devotion of the inhabitants of these Islands to the Throne and King George V. The motion was backed with the vote of 100 guineas in aid of the War Fund and by warís end, through additional donations, Caymanís total contribution amounted to 450 Pounds, about 10 per cent of governmentís revenues for the year 1918. Of course we know the signing of the Armistice did not put an end to future wars. In September 1939 Caymanians found themselves once again rallying around the British cause in World War II and it wasnít just Caymanians Some 10,000 Caribbean men left their families and homes to join the British armed forces, working behind the scenes and on the frontline to help with the war effort. While World War I offered our people an opportunity to show loyalty to the Mother Country, World War II offered our men opportunities to serve abroad, learn new skills and send much-needed money to their families at home and offered employment to those who remained here serving in the Home Guard and working behind the scenes for the war effort. Today we salute those men for their service and valor. I appreciate them and their families who made sacrifices and served the Cayman Islands well. They will forever live in our hearts.