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LETTER TO THE EDITOR | Why the Legion adopted the poppy
To the editor:
I sincerely thank you for coming to the Maple Ridge Center to record the poppy girls and the awesome veterans there.
I don’t know if you have the history of the poppy. After a bloody World War I battle in France, amidst the blood bloomed red poppies which the soldiers said were a symbol of hope to them.
The American Legion Auxiliary adopted the poppies as their symbol for the Memorial Day flower in 1921 and pledged that all profits from the poppies would be used to support veterans. Over 25 million poppies are made annually by disabled veterans. The Auxiliary buys them from the veterans, distributes them as a fundraiser and those funds return to support veterans, a full circle.
The poppy girls will be distributing poppies at the Mukilteo ferry dock May 18, Armed Forces Day, and the Clinton ferry dock May 19 from noon to 3 p.m. We are also asking that Memorial Day also be known as Poppy Day and that all Americans wear a poppy Memorial Day in honor of those men and women who have fought and continue to fight to keep America free and safe. Also watch at local stores for poppy distributors.
The poppy girls also lay a poppy wreath at the Bayview Cemetery Memorial Day.
Anastasia Leese, our junior poppy girl, comes from a long line of veterans. Her great-great-great grandfather served with Teddy Roosevelt at San Juan; her great grandpa Wally Lott, was a Seabee and submariner in the Navy and a deceased member of our local American Legion 141; her great-grandpa David Skaggs was a Navy corpsman in Fiji; her grandpa Bill Hughes, 2nd Vice President of American Legion 141, is a disabled veteran and a former Navy Seal; and Grandpa Leese was in the Army for the Korean War.
If anyone needs poppies or more information, they may contact me 360-341-2688 or call The American Legion at 321-5696.
American Legion Post 141 Auxiliary 2nd Vice President