We Will Remember: Legion set to launch poppy campaign

We Will Remember: Legion set to launch poppy campaign
Pictured are Cornwall Mayor Bob Kilger

By Adam Brazeau  
CORNWALL, Ontario – While Canada unites for Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, the soldier killed in the shootings at Parliament Hill on Wednesday, Cornwall’s war veterans prepare thousands of little red badges of honour for Friday, Oct. 31.

Members of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 297 visited Cornwall Mayor Bob Kilger’s office Thursday to announce that their annual poppy campaign begins next week.

In light of a recent deadly hit-and-run that killed one soldier and injured a second in Quebec, and the attack on Parliament Hill, this year’s campaign is a particularly poignant one.

“It’s very important that we all pin a poppy to our lapels in memory of those who have fallen in war, and in aid of those who have fought and continue to fight today,” said Hugh Primeau Sr., campaign chair.

Legion reps will be out front of local retail shops and grocery markets daily selling poppies from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. until Tuesday, Nov. 11.

Many convenience stores, as well as The Beer Store and the LCBO, throughout the city and area will have small stations where people can pick up a poppy.

Every elementary school and high school in Cornwall will also receive their own batch.

Any donation is welcomed.

“It’s not how much they give – as long as they give something. It’s the overall total that makes the difference,” said Primeau Sr.

In 2011, the campaign raised $47,000.

The funds will help aging veterans and their widows pay for their health care bills. It will also assist a therapy dog program for Afghanistan veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Jack Rowden, Legion member and Korean War vet, added that the secret to a successful campaign is to distribute so that the entire community can wear a poppy on Nov. 11.

Plans for Remembrance Day include a solemn march by Legion members from the branch headquarters at Second and Cumberland streets to the cenotaph a few blocks away, where wreaths will be laid.

For more information, call the Legion’s poppy office at (613) 933-6161.

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