Approximately 200 people came out to the Highway 401 bridge in Port Hope to mark the first anniversary of the Freedom Convoy.
The Freedom Convoy descended on Ottawa in 2022 protesting and setting up blockades against COVID-19 mandates and restrictions and lasted approximately three weeks.
On Saturday, 29, 2023, from noon until 2 p.m., people from across Eastern Ontario parked at Easton’s Service Centre and walked the short distance to the Highway 401 overpass in Port Hope while police kept a close eye on the proceedings.
“It’s us against the Nazi’s,” said one man waving a Canadian flag on County Road 28 on the Highway 401 overpass.
The man said he came from north of Lindsay for the event.
“We don’t have any democracy right now. We having nothing.”
People came from Ottawa, Belleville, Kingston, Peterborough, Lindsay, Port Hope and Cobourg were at the event.
Jeff Brackett from Millbrook said it was a “celebration” of last year when the truck convoy came through on their way to Ottawa.
“It’s a wonderful reminder of people coming together.”
Bracket said he went to a bridge along the highway last year and felt for the first time there were people felt the same.
“I felt so alone up to that point.”
“It started our hope for the future. I had lost hope.”
Brackett explained that if his children had jobs they could lose them without getting the vaccine and have no unemployment insurance.
“Totally shunned by the Federal government. Totally made second class citizens.”
“For the longest time we couldn’t get on a train and travel across the country – it was just nuts.”
Calling Saturday’s event a “unification of concerned people.”
Brackett said it marks and important day.
“We went to Ottawa last year. It was such a peaceful, wonderful thing. It was just inspiring.”
One woman at the event said the Convoy did made a difference.
“It woke up a lot of Canadians.”
“It makes them pay attention to their government and what’s going on – what they’re doing.”
“I never watched CPAC before. I never watched the House of Commons before – but now I pay attention.”
At the Gully Road overpass the bridge was vandalized in both the east and westbound lanes stating, “Trudeau Must Go Stop Bill C 21 C 11,” but it’s unknown if it was as a result of the convoy anniversary.