Linda Macauley, 1st Vice-President of the Royal Canadian Legion Branch #78 in Turner Valley and Chair of the Poppy Campaign Committee, had the honour of pinning the first Poppy of this year’s Poppy Campaign on local dignitaries yesterday.
The ceremony was held at the Cenotaph in front of the Legion in Turner Valley and was attended by:
Barb Castell, Constituency Assistant for John Barlow, Member of Parliament for Macleod
Councillor Jim Deacon, Town of Black Diamond
Councillor Jason Parker, M.D. of Foothills Division 3
Councillor Carole Macleod, Village of Longview
This ceremony marks the official start of the Poppy Campaign every year and precedes the offering of Poppies to the general public, which starts today.
The Poppy signifies Remembrance – of all those who paid the ultimate sacrifice, all those who are veterans and those who are currently serving.
The Annual Poppy Campaign runs from the last Friday in October until November 11th. The correct place to wear your Poppy is on the left side of your outermost garment, close to your heart. Many people remove their Poppies following the Remembrance Day Service and place them on a cross at the base of the Cenotaph – the Poppy should not be worn after midnight on November 11th.
Linda said that because so many High River businesses did not re-open after the 2013 floods they are sharing the Okotoks Poppy locations with the High River Legion. The Horton Road, Calgary Legion was also in need of help covering their locations so the Turner Valley Legion will be at their Silverado locations.
In light of recent events in Ottawa and Quebec it is expected that this year’s campaign will exceed last year’s which amounted to an unprecedented $58,000 for the Turner Valley Branch #78.
One question frequently asked is: Can I attach the Poppy to clothing with another type of pin?
The Royal Canadian Legion manual answers this:
There have been many queries related to the wearing of the lapel Poppy, specifically as it relates to using a pin or other such fastening device in the center of the Poppy. [for example, the Canadian Flag pin]
It is the position of the Legion that the Poppy is the sacred symbol of Remembrance and should not be defaced in any way. No other pin, therefore, should be used to attach it to clothing.
While this should be the practice of all Legionnaires, it is recognized that the Legion cannot control its form of wear by the public.
It is undoubtedly better to wear a Poppy with a pin in the center than not to wear a Poppy at all.
The best that we can do is to encourage Legionnaires to wear it properly.