Tone of melancholy
Auxiliary spends thousands of hours supporting P.E.I. veterans
Generations of women who've spent thousands of hours supporting P.E.I. veterans were recognized recently.
Members of the Ladies' Auxiliary of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch #1 in Charlottetown were honoured during their annual tea, which may be the last one ever held in the building.
The Charlottetown Legion building has been put up for sale, leaving the future of the group's home unclear.
Lt.-Gov. Frank Lewis thanked the women for working on behalf and in support of veterans.
He said there was an "unfortunate implication" in the word auxiliary, which has a literary definition of being an "add-on, additional or supplementary."
"There is nothing supplementary about the Ladies' Auxiliary," said Lewis. "You, those before you, and those since have been at the heart of respect, remembrance and caring support of the legion and veterans for a century.
"All of you across the generations deserve and have our heartfelt appreciation."
While the event was a joyous celebration meant to honour the many long-time members of the auxiliary, it also carried a tone of melancholy.
Whether through working the many banquets, raising money or donating time for events like Remembrance Day or helping out at the New Years Levee, auxiliary members have put many hours into helping the community.
President Annie Barratt said many members continue with the group until they're unable to.
"They stay with it right until the end. There are so many people here that do far more than what is called for," said Barratt.
Mary Kickham, who has been a member for nine years, said more recent members like herself have "had it made" compared to some of the long-time members.
"These people have been so dedicated. They worked here when there wasn't a dishwasher and had to do it by hand, and when there wasn't an elevator," said Kickham. "Conditions were much more difficult for them than they are for us today."