With the shutdown of the Langley Legion branch, the task of coordinating poppy sales leading up to Remembrance Day has fallen to the two neighbouring branches.
That’s why Canadian Navy veteran Earle Fraser, a Cloverdale Legion member was standing in front of the Langley Walmart on Tuesday, Oct. 29, distributing poppies to donors.
Fraser, who is in charge of the poppy campaign at the Cloverdale branch, described the task of selling poppies in a community with no local Legion branch as a “challenge.”
Responsibility for the poppy campaign has been split, with Langley divided between the Aldergrove and Cloverdale branches.
With 216th Street as the dividing line, the Aldergrove branch is coordinating poppy sales to the east and Cloverdale to the west.
Fraser said rather than have Langley volunteers make repeated trips to Cloverdale, “we just load them up so they don’t have to drive back and forth,” he explained.
“They can canvass three or four days [before they have to reload].”
Langley Legion Branch 21 ended up in the red after moving from its former home on Eastleigh Crescent to a smaller 56 Avenue location in 2010 .
The Legion had planned to spend between $400,000 and $700,000 on renovations and upgrading to its new property, but it turned out that the building they purchased needed more than $1 million in improvements, more than they’d paid for the property itself.
Money raised by poppy donations by BC/Yukon Legion Branches provides over $3.8 million annually in funds donated for Veteran support, community groups, youth, individual emergency funding and hospitals. They are an integral part of the social fabric of our communities.,” said Veronica Brown, executive director of the BC/Yukon Command.
More information on 2019 Remembrance Day services is at www.legionbcyukon.ca.