Burnaby will once again host Korean War veterans at a special event at Central Park this Saturday at 11 a.m.
The Korea Veterans Association - Western Canada chapter has organized events at the Ambassador of Peace monument in Central Park for several years now and this Saturday's event promises to be as memorable and poignant as ever.
Saturday's event is scheduled to include the Vancouver Naval Veterans band and colour party, the Western Command with its vintage military vehicles and a Second World War cannon, a bugler, piper, cenotaph sentries, a veteran's parade and a picnic lunch hosted by members of the Korean community.
Politicians of all stripes will also be in attendance alongside the Consul General of Korea.
"We're very honoured that the Korean community in Burnaby and Coquitlam has adopted our cities as the centre of Korean culture," said Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan, who is planning on attending the Saturday ceremony. "It's a real compliment to Burnaby that we've been chosen to host this service the past several years."
Corrigan said he has a personal connection to this service, as his father and uncle both served in the Korean War and he wants to pay his respects to their courage.
"It's pretty cool to have this ceremony in Burnaby," he said. "I have a special affinity for this."
In 2011, hundreds of people turned out in the pouring rain in Central Park to pay tribute, on the 60th anniversary, to the soldiers who fought in the Battle of Kapyong, a key battle and turning point in the Korean War.
The Battle of Kapyong was fought between April 22 and 25, 1951, pitting United Nations forces - primarily Australian and Canadian - against the Chinese Communists, with the UN forces needing to win to keep Seoul under Korean rule.
The Korean War, which ran for more than three years before an armistice agreement was signed on July 27, 1953, was a military conflict between South Korea, supported by the United Nations, and North Korea, supported by the People's Republic of China, with military material aid from the Soviet Union.
The three-year war included a mobile campaign of swift infantry attacks followed by air bombing raids, but became a static trench war by July 1951. In 1953, the war ceased with an armistice that restored the border between the Koreas near the 38th parallel.