Independence Day Celebration in Vancouver
5 July 2012
Key bilateral issues during Consul General Anne Callaghan’s first year in Vancouver have been the roll-out of the Beyond the Border and Regulatory Cooperation Action Plan, and the announcement that Canada had been invited into the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Addressing 400 guests at her July 5 garden party to celebrate the 236th birthday of the United States, the consul general said other issues she has focused on are law enforcement initiatives, ecological protection and cultural exchange.
“Our Independence Day is an occasion not only to remember the principles of freedom and liberty, on which our country was founded,” she said, “but also to honor those who have embodied, defended, and upheld those ideals in good times and in bad.”
Consul General Callaghan recounted the events that she had attended in Vancouver last year to mark the 10th anniversary of September 11, shortly after starting her term as Consul General.
“It was an honor to be part of this very moving occasion, paying tribute to those who lost their lives on that tragic day, and to the first responders and ordinary citizens, including thousands of Canadians, who rendered assistance in the aftermath,” she said. “The outpouring of support from our Canadian neighbors gave us hope that even following one of the darkest days in our country’s history, freedom and liberty would once again prevail.”
“Here in British Columbia, we are proud and honored to be America’s closest neighbor and partner,” said John Les, Parliamentary Secretary to the Premier, citing the B.C. government’s close working relationship with the government of Washington State and its involvement in the Pacific Northwest Economic Region (PNWER).
The Declaration of Independence, reflected Les, “has guided the growth and development of not only the United States, but of many countries around the world who have aspired to those same goals and objectives – the pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness.“
The presentation of colors was by the U.S. Marine Aviation Training Support Group 53 Color Guard from Oak Bay, Washington and British Columbia’s 39 Canadian Brigade Group Color Detail. The national anthems were sung by Brandon Thornhill, an American studying opera at University of British Columbia. Music was provided by the Bessborough Brass Quintet of the Band of the 15th Field Regiment of the Royal Canadian Artillery.