‘The money collected here, stays here for the most part'
The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 26 Ladies Auxiliary was busy on Friday and will be again today with the annual poppy campaign. Martha Hoeg, front left, Doris Pearson, Annie Lamont, back left, and Flo Morrison were at the legion counting money as it was returned and preparing boxes to send out. Raissa Tetanish - Truro Daily News
TRURO - For the next two weeks, poppy tables and boxes will be set up in local businesses leading up to Remembrance Day.
Flo Morrison, who looks after co-ordinating the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 26 Ladies Auxiliary, said about 6,000 poppies distributed in Colchester County are through their organization over a two-day period.
"We have 88 shifts in a two-day span," she said, adding auxiliary members and other volunteers were out yesterday and will be again today from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Branch members will be out on Monday until Nov. 10, excluding Sundays.
"Last year, we brought in $9,561," Morrison said about the two-day poppy campaign. "That money helps with veterans and their families, goes to sponsor bursaries and we also help local cadets out. The money collected here, stays here for the most part."
With a number of auxiliary members in their 90s (Florence Hamilton is 96 and still extremely active with the auxiliary), Morrison said the hardest part to the campaign is finding the volunteers to fill the two-hour shifts.
"We depend on volunteers. I have friends from a sorority that I call on. I wouldn't be able to fill the shifts with just members," she said.
When the auxiliary members finish tonight, Legion members will begin at 10 a.m. and finish at 8 p.m., beginning Monday at almost 10 different locations in Truro.
Wilson MacDonald, who co-ordinates the campaign for legion branch members, said there also several boxes that will be dropped off at other businesses to be put on the counter.
"We are quite successful with our volunteering," he said of filling the 80 hours a day volunteered in two-hour shifts. "Our members do pretty good with it and we get a lot of help from sea and army cadets. We're very pleased with that."
Murray Dawson, branch president, said about $40,000 was raised last year through the legion's campaign.
"That was around 32 to 33,000 poppies being distributed," he said, adding there were wreaths purchased and monetary donations as well.
"This town is amazing. We're not hoping for the same thing this year because we don't need to. The citizens always show up for us - they're fantastic."
Canadian soldiers killed in active duty:
First World War: 66,655
Second World War: 44,093
Korean War: 516
United Nations peacekeeping missions: 121