Poppy Day has become a familiar tradition in almost every American community. This distribution of the bright red memorial flower to the public is one of the oldest and most widely recognized programs of the American Legion Auxiliary.
This poppy, as a memorial flower to the war dead, can be traced to a single individual, Miss Moina Michael. She was so moved by Col. McCrae's poem that she wrote a response:
The blood of heroes never dies
But lends a luster to the red
Of the flower that blooms above the dead
In Flanders' Fields
On impulse, she bought a bouquet of poppies - all that New York City's Wanamaker's Department Store had - and handed them to businessmen meeting at the New York YMCA where she worked. She asked them to wear the poppy as a tribute to the fallen. This was November, 1918. Later she would spearhead a campaign that would result in the adoption of the poppy as the national symbol of sacrifice.
Planned to coincide with the Memorial Day Holiday, the annual event pays tribute to those Veterans who have died in the last 80 years. It also honors the millions of Americans who have willingly served their country in eight decades.
Each nine-piece poppy is made by veterans for veterans in Auxiliary-sponsored Poppy Shops that supplement physical and psychological therapy needed by hospitalized and disabled veterans. The Auxiliary provided the materials and the volunteers. The Veterans make the poppy and is paid a small amount for each painstakingly made flower. For some it is his or her only income.
The local American Legion Auxiliary uses whatever donations they receive from Poppy Day to help in their Emergency Veterans Fund.
This is to help any Veteran in our city with any emergency we can. If you have any questions please contact Claudia Brown, Unit President at 225 3449. They appreciate everyone's past support and hope they can rely on everyone for their support again this year.