Focus On Souvenirs
About the poppy:
Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, a noted Canadian physician before the war, served with Canada’s First Brigade Artillery as a surgeon at a field hospital in Belgium. As he worked within sight of poppies blooming across old battlefields and fresh graves, he crafted a poignant testament against war and wasted lives that arguably became the Great War’s most famous poem, “In Flanders Fields.” McCrae himself died from disease in 1918, the war’s last year.
American Moina Michael is credited for giving rise to the use of the poppy as a symbol of remembrance. Working as a YMCA Overseas War secretary in New York, she read that John McCrae had died and vowed to always wear a red poppy of Flanders Fields in remembrance.
She made the first sales of the Flanders Fields Memorial Poppy in November 1918. From that point forward, it was her mission to make the poppy the national memorial symbol and inspire the world to return to peace after the “war to end all wars.”
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