You might start seeing red poppies popping up all over the place as we get closer to memorial day. Those poppies have a very special meaning, and Nicole Clapp, national president of the American Legion Auxillary is here to explain it.
National Poppy Day is always the Friday before Memorial Day. Dating all the way back to World War One, the poppy has been displayed to raise awareness around the sacrifice that veterans and active-duty military members and their families make on a daily basis.
"The red [on the flower] represents the blood that was shed in World War One in Flanders Fields in Belgium and France," she says. "It is a constant reminder for us to appreciate that ultimate sacrifice that they made so that we can enjoy our freedoms today."
The American Legion was originally formed after WW1 to take care of those returning from war, and the widows and families of those who did not return. In 1920 the Legion adopted the poppy as their memorial flower because red flowers grew in the fields where so many of those veterans gave the ultimate sacrifice.
If you'd like to participate in National Poppy Day, you can give a donation to anyone passing out poppies and wear the flower on your lapel as a way to start conversions about the issue. To learn more, click here