web analytics

Tag Archive | "American Legion Auxiliary"

Wear a poppy this National Poppy Day


Ann Fournier spends her hour-long commute piecing together tiny petals of red crepe paper to assemble poppies to support veterans.

(BPT) – For many Americans, it starts with wearing the poppy on National Poppy Day, an annual tribute to the price of freedom. This year, National Poppy Day is May 25.

For Ann Fournier, it starts with a train ride. She has taken the same train at 5 a.m. and 4:50 p.m. daily for 30 years. She spends her hour-long commutes piecing together tiny petals of red crepe paper to assemble poppies to support veterans.

Fournier’s work has made her a symbol on the train. Known as the “Poppy Lady,” she has created 100,000 poppies each year over several decades. Her commitment began as a tribute to her brothers, who served during Vietnam, but has continued as a way to honor each veteran and civilian she has met on her ride to the American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) state headquarters in Boston.

“The conductor saves a seat with a table for me every day,” says Fournier, who serves as ALA Department of Massachusetts secretary/executive director. “He’s a veteran as well. Sometimes he sits with me to help. Sometimes strangers ask me what I’m doing. But the best moments happen when a veteran sits down or thanks me. I don’t do it for the thanks; I do it because I can, and these little red flowers are a way to help those in need. Our veterans don’t get enough of anything.”

The red poppy holds great meaning for veterans all over the world. After the battles of World War I, the blood-red poppy flourished in France and Belgium when battlefields became burial grounds. The red flowers suddenly bloomed among the newly dug gravesites of fallen service members, turning the new graveyards into fields of red. Today, the poppy is a symbol of sacrifices made from WWI to today’s war on terror.

Millions of people worldwide wear the red poppy as a call to honor living veterans and those who lost their lives. The tradition can be traced back to 1918 when Moina Michael popularized the idea of wearing a poppy flower in memory of the military lives lost in WWI. She drew inspiration from the poem In Flanders Fields, written by WWI Col. John McCrae as he gazed at the rows and rows of graves where his comrades had been recently buried. In the decades that followed, poppies have been worn, displayed and distributed for fundraising efforts for veterans service organizations around the world.

The American Legion Family is the driving force behind the now trademarked National Poppy Day because of its support for veterans and long-standing connection to the poppy flower. In the early 1920s, the Legion Family adopted the poppy as its official memorial flower to pay homage to the battlefields of WWI. Now, it is the Family’s mission to support the military community by promoting the significance of the flower and the meaning behind it.

Members and volunteers connected to the ALA, one of the nation’s most prominent supporters of veterans’ rights, leverage the poppy in service to the veteran community through Poppy Day distributions and outreach. ALA volunteers hand out red paper or fabric poppies in exchange for donations that go directly to support veterans. Many of those poppies are made by hospitalized and disabled veterans as a form of rehabilitation and a source of income through this ALA program. In 2017, ALA members throughout the U.S. distributed nearly 6 million poppies or poppy items and raised $3.9 million in donations that went directly to help veterans, military and their families.

“This flower is personal to me,” says Fournier. “Because of it, I’ve been able to share stories about our veterans and the ALA’s work. I’ve also been able to explain that helping a veteran can be as simple as donating money in exchange for a poppy or as committed as making 100,000 poppies each year. It’s about what you can do to help.”

Donning a poppy this National Poppy Day and every day is one simple way to show gratitude for a community that has given its lives to protect ours. To learn more, visit www.poppydayusa.org.

Posted in Arts & Entertainment, FeaturedComments (0)

American Legion to host state commanders


The Sons of the American Legion Commander Dominic Merlington

American Legion Commander for the State of Michigan is Brett Holt

The American Legion Post #287 in Cedar Springs is proud to welcome their State Commanders and Presidents to our Post home for the annual Early Bird Dinner. The dinner is held the first week in January to show our appreciation to the members of our Post, Auxiliary and Sons of the American Legion who have paid their dues by Veterans Day of the previous fall. It is our tradition to invite the leaders of our State to attend this event. In the past this dinner was held to give them red flannels to keep them warm on their Upper Peninsula trip that usually follows right after our dinner. 

This year the American Legion Commander for the State of Michigan is Brett Holt. Brett is from Post #439 in Saginaw, having served in the Navy during the Lebanon/Grenada era. He has been on many committees and held most positions at the Post, District,State and National level. His special project this year is Michigan American Legion Foundation. His theme is MEMO-Communicate to Succeed. 

American Legion Auxiliary President for 2017-2018 is Deanna Cortright

Honorary Junior President is Emma Damouth

The American Legion Auxiliary President for 2017-2018 is Deanna Cortright. She is a member of the Auxiliary Unit #52 in Coldwater. She is a 35-year member, eligible through the service of her father who served in both Korea and Vietnam. She has held all offices and many chairmanships on her way to the office of President. Her special project is Project Boits on the Ground. Her theme is “Dolls and Bears Together for our Veterans.”  

The Sons of the American Legion Commander is from our own Post. The Legion family is proud to have Dominic Merlington representing us as State Detachment Commander. He has been a member of Squadron #287 for over 30 years, joining under the service of his grandfather, Robert Merlington. He is following in the footsteps of his father, Ronny Merlington who served as Detachment Commander in 1986/87. He and his family live in Cedar Springs. His special project is Fisher House Foundation, which provides temporary accommodations for veterans and military personnel and their families while the veteran is receiving medical attention at a VA medical center. His theme is “Sons Will.” 

Our honorary Junior President is Emma Damouth. She is a sophomore at Niles High School. Her favorite subject is art. She also loves music. Her special project is Walking Across Michigan-Keeping our Veterans Warm. She is collecting blankets to give to homeless veterans. Her theme is “Lion King.” 

All of our State officials will be at the dinner to speak about their projects. They will be treated to a warm red flannel welcome and even join in our annual “chicken dance.” The dinner will be held Saturday night at Post #287 at 80 S. Main St., Cedar Springs.    

Posted in NewsComments (0)

American Legion Auxiliary donate backpacks for back to school


 

Pictured are (left to right) Tricia Schenefield; Beth Whaley; Auxiliary Unit President Deborah Chambers; Miranda Latimer; Auxiliary Unit Education Chairman Mary Anne Yuncker; and Carol Franz.

School recently started again, and the need for school supplies is expensive. For students and families who have a hard time affording the required items, the American Legion Auxiliary Unit #287 was there to help. The Auxiliary provided 50 backpacks filled with school supplies to the Cedar Springs elementary schools.  The bags were presented to the school principals at the August School Board meeting and divided between the schools.

Posted in Business, Cedar Springs Public SchoolsComments (0)

American Legion welcomes state commanders and presidents


American Legion Auxiliary Honorary Junior President, Sabrina Townes.

American Legion Auxiliary Honorary Junior President, Sabrina Townes.

Sons of the American Legion Commander, Carvin Chapman.

Sons of the American Legion Commander, Carvin Chapman.

American Legion Auxiliary President, Ellen Jackson.

American Legion Auxiliary President, Ellen Jackson.

American Legion Commander for Michigan, Larry Money.

American Legion Commander for Michigan, Larry Money.

The American Legion Post #287 in Cedar Springs is proud to welcome the State Commanders and Presidents to our home for the annual Early Bird Dinner. The dinner is held the first week in January to show our appreciation to the members of our Post, Auxiliary and Sons of the American Legion who have paid their dues by Veterans Day of the previous fall.  It is our tradition to invite the leaders of our state to attend this event. It is also our tradition to give them each a set of Red Flannels. In the past it was given to prepare them for the Upper Peninsula trip which usually follows directly after our dinner, in an attempt to keep them warm during the cold and often snowy conditions of the UP in January.

This year the American Legion Commander for the State of Michigan is Larry Money. He was elected and installed as Commander at the 2016 Annual Summer Convention held in Sault Saint Marie, Michigan, June 23-26. Larry is from Post #51 in Buchanan Michigan. He has worked tirelessly for the cause of veterans in this state, holding many offices and chairmanships along the way, including membership and Americanism. He has served as Post Commander, District Commander, and Department vice Commander. Commander Money is a U.S. Army veteran who served from 1969-1976 in the 12th Special Forces Group. He has been a member of the Buchannan Post for 38 continuous years. He and his wife Barb have three sons and three daughters. At our dinner, Commander Money will be speaking about his special project Operation Comfort Warriors and bringing updates on Legion activities this year. We welcome Larry to our Post.

The American Legion Auxiliary President for 2016-2017 is Ellen Jackson. She was also elected at the State Convention this summer. She is a member of Walter Fraser Unit #108 in Oxford, Michigan. She has held many offices and chairmanships on her way to the office of President. She has been busy this year traveling around our State visiting the many Districts and Posts. Her theme for this year is “Hats Off For Veterans”. Her special project is The Michigan Wounded and Returning Warrior Program. Ellen has been married to her husband PDC Carnie, a Viet Nam era veteran, for ten years. They have three children and four grandchildren. Welcome to Ellen and Carnie to our Post.

The Sons of the American Legion Detachment of Michigan is proud to bring Carvin Chapman to our Post as the Commander for the State of Michigan for 2016-20217. He is a member of the Chief Pontiac Post #377 Sons of the American Legion Squadron and has served there for nearly 30 years. He says that he is 100 percent for veterans and is striving for 100 percent membership this year. He has been Squadron Commander, 18th District Commander, and Zone Commander. He also serves as a VA Rep in Detroit. His Special project is Operation Comfort Warriors, a program dedicated to meeting the needs of wounded, injured or ill military personnel. He has been married to his wife Kathy for 32 years, has two sons, six grandchildren and two great grandchildren. We are looking forward to spending time with Carvin “Huey” and Kathy.

We are also proud to have with us from the Department of Michigan, American Legion Auxiliary Honorary Junior President, Sabrina Townes. She is from our own Unit and area, being a member of Glen Hill Unit #287 here in Cedar Springs since 2001.  Sabrina’s theme this year is Tinkerbell.  She and her Department Junior officers are spreading their “pixie dust” around the State bringing happiness and awareness to veterans and the American Legion Family. Honorary Junior President Sabrina’s special project this year is Stiggy’s Dogs. This is a nonprofit organization that rescues dogs from shelters and with the help of correctional facilities trains them for veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). This is done at no cost to the veteran. Stiggyy’s Dogs is based in Michigan and is for Michigan veterans. We are very proud of Sabrina and the project she has chosen.

The dinner will be held Saturday night at the Post at 80 S. Main St. in Cedar Springs.

Posted in NewsComments (0)

American Legion Auxiliary Juniors host event


On November 19, the American Legion Auxiliary, Glen Hill Unit 287 Auxiliary Juniors hosted an overnight event, where Juniors from around the state gathered for fun activities and worked on Americanism projects. Some of the projects were flag etiquette and making things to send to the troops. Our honorary state Junior President Chelsie Kovacs was in attendance and was given $67.00 towards her Elmobility Project. They were also honored to have the state Department President Carrie Bowerman, along with other Department members, join them for the activities and fellowship.

Posted in FeaturedComments (0)

Women’s auxiliary makes donation to food pantry


Pictured in the photo is Auxiliary Unit and District President Christine Merlington (right) presenting the food and the check to food pantry directors Bob and Judy Murray (left).

The American Legion Auxiliary made a donation to the Cedar Springs Community Food Pantry last week. Glen Hill Unit #287 in Cedar Springs donated two boxes of food and personal items, along with a check to the food pantry on Monday, August 1. The food was collected at a Texas Hold ‘em tournament held in Greenville at Post #101 July 21-24.

The Auxiliary works diligently to promote community involvement. The community service committee is a program within the Auxiliary that helps serve those in need and works at the neighborhood and hometown levels to meet the needs of the residents in our area. The food pantry is a good way to reach out and make an impact in our city of Cedar Springs.

Posted in NewsComments (1)

Hats for newborns


Junior Auxiliary member Brenda Reed with some of the hats she made for newborn babies.

The American Legion Auxiliary ladies have been busy making hats for the newborn babies at DeVos Children’s Hospital. Special recognition is given to junior member, Brenda Reed. Brenda is a member of the Glen Hill Unit #287 in Cedar Springs. She is 12 years old and made 77 hats to be donated. Member Kelly Roush made 29 hats, and member Jackie Gage donated 16 baby hats to Spectrum Butterworth Hospital. The little ones and staff at both of these facilities are appreciative of the time and effort that made these gifts possible.

Posted in NewsComments (0)


advert
Advertising Rates Brochure
Kent Theatre

Get the Cedar Springs Post in your mailbox for only $35.00 a year!