Wear a poppy this Memo­rial Day week­end

Maryland Independent - - Community Forum -

Amer­i­can Le­gion Aux­il­iary Unit 82 in La Plata en­cour­ages Charles County res­i­dents to honor fallen war­riors on Na­tional Poppy Day.

Honor our fallen war­riors and con­trib­ute to the con­tin­u­ing needs of our vet­er­ans this Memo­rial Day week­end. The Amer­i­can Le­gion Aux­il­iary Unit 82 will be dis­tribut­ing bright red pop­pies May 27-28 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Gi­ant in La Plata, and at Chick-fil-A in La Plata on May 27 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in ex­change for a do­na­tion. You may also stop by the Amer­i­can Le­gion Post 82 at 6330 Crain High­way, La Plata, to pick up a poppy and make a do­na­tion.

The Flan­ders Fields poppy has be­come an in­ter­na­tion­ally known and rec­og­nized sym­bol of the lives sac­ri­ficed in war and the hope that none died in vain. Wear­ing the poppy through­out Memo­rial Day week­end is one small way to honor and re­mem­ber our fallen war­riors who will­ingly served our na­tion and made the ul­ti­mate sac­ri­fice for our free­dom. We must never for­get.

The poppy also hon­ors hos­pi­tal­ized and dis­abled vet­er­ans who hand­craft many of the red, crepe pa­per flow­ers. Mak­ing the pop­pies pro­vides a fi­nan­cial and ther­a­peu­tic ben­e­fit to the vet­er­ans, as well as a ben­e­fit to thou­sands of oth­ers through the dona­tions col­lected.

When the Amer­i­can Le­gion fam­ily adopted the poppy as its memo­rial flower in the early 1920s, the blood-red icon be­came an en­dur­ing sym­bol of honor for the sac­ri­fices of our vet­er­ans from the bat­tle­fields of France in World War I to to­day’s global war on ter­ror. The Amer­i­can Le­gion Aux­il­iar y raises funds each year dis­tribut­ing pop­pies through­out the na­tion, with 100 per­cent of the funds raised go­ing di­rectly to help vet­er­ans.

For nearly a cen­tur y, Amer­i­can Le­gion Aux­il­iar y (ALA) mem­bers have ded­i­cated them­selves to meet­ing the needs of our na­tion’s vet­er­ans, mil­i­tar y and their fam­i­lies both here and abroad. They vol­un­teer mil­lions of hours yearly. As part of the world’s largest women’s ser vice or­ga­ni­za­tion, ALA vol­un­teers across the countr y also step up to honor vet­er­ans and mil­i­tary through an­nual schol­ar­ships and with ALA Girls State pro­grams, teach­ing high school ju­niors to be lead­ers grounded in pa­tri­o­tism and Amer­i­can­ism.

The Amer­i­can Le­gion Fam­ily at Post 82 in La Plata hosts din­ners and other fundrais­ers to sup­port our vet­er­ans. Thank you to our com­mu­nity for sup­port­ing our func­tions — by do­ing so you are help­ing us help our vet­er­ans.

Kitty Daw­son, La Plata The writer is the poppy chair­man for the Amer­i­can Le­gion Aux­il­iary Unit 82.

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