I had the opportunity to visit Pier 21 while in Halifax. I wanted to visit this site for sometime as, in doing so, I was paying homage to my own family’s history. Pier 21 is Canada’s Immigration Museum and between 1928 and 1971 one and a half million immigrants passed through its arrival halls.
Shortly after the end of World War II, my own Papa and his family arrived here too … a young family fleeing the war-torn life of Britain for new beginnings in Canada. He arrived on HMS Aquitania (pictured below) and made his way through Halifax to Montreal and soon after onward to Ontario.
There are a million plus stories of immigrant arrivals to Canada, each unique. And oh the courage immigrants have in leaving what they know behind, risking everything, for the potential of what can be. We ought remember this whenever we come in contact with a new immigrant. We must support and help them for they believe in Canada.
And, afterall, as Denise Chong said: “In all our pasts are an immigrant beginning …”.