For nearly 100 years the Veterans of Foreign Wars have distributed poppies as a way to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
“Our VFW model is to remember the dead by helping the living,” said Bob Colby, the chairman of Poppy Days.
And Judd Kendall VFW in Naperville is doing just that by handing out Buddy Poppy flowers throughout the community.
The History of Buddy Poppy
The red flowers grew where so many soldiers had fallen during the First World War, and have since become a symbol of those lost during wartime.
“It’s not a rose, it’s a poppy. And then when it came to the United States it evolved into what we have now,” said Post Commander Pablo Araya. “Veterans making these for other veterans to remember, so it became a buddy poppy. And that’s why we call them Buddy Poppy now.”
That tradition lives on today, as veterans from across the U.S. hand-make the flowers so others don’t forget about the sacrifices made.
VFW’s Goal With Buddy Poppy Days
From May 22-27 community members can pick up a Buddy Poppy at various locations throughout Naperville.
“We don’t sell poppies, we’re distributing poppies because it’s a remembrance of the people who gave their lives,” said Colby. “And we’re grateful for the contributions because it supports a lot of our programs. But, we don’t have a specific number. People say ‘How much?’ we just say ‘Whatever you can give.’”
Naperville News 17’s Christian Canizal reports.
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