May 22 is National Poppy Day. The symbolism of the poppy dates back more than 100 years, since World War I.
Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae wrote the famous poem “In Flanders Field” in 1915, and the poppy flower soon became a recognized symbol of sacrifice and remembrance. McCrae wrote the poem about his fellow soldiers being killed in battle, and in November 1918, a member of the American Legion Auxiliary, Moina Michael, read the poem. She picked up on the first part – "in Flanders Field the poppies blow between the crosses row on row" – which she believed would be a powerful symbol for a campaign to collect money to be used for the military, the veterans and their families.
The Yorkville American Legion Auxiliary announced it would like supporters to know that this year’s annual Poppy Campaign is being done differently because of COVID-19. Auxiliary members and community volunteers cannot meet face-to-face to collect donations. The tentative plan is to distribute poppies this fall, possibly in conjunction with Veterans Day in November.
How to lend support now
In addition, donation cans will be placed in merchant locations as permitted. Poppies can be mailed to anyone who submits a request to Poppy Chairman Joanne Leibold via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or her P.O. box address below. Donations to assist veterans also will be accepted at any time by mailing them to the Yorkville American Legion Auxiliary, Attn: Jo Leibold, P.O. Box 1084, Yorkville, IL 60560. All poppy donations are used for rehabilitation of veterans and their families in need.
The American Legion Auxiliary recently celebrated its 100th anniversary, marking a century of service helping the United States military, supporting the American Legion, and honoring veterans and their families.