From Red Poppies to American Flags: Remembering Those Who Died in Defense of Our Country

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Soldiers’ Angels has collected over 5000 American Flags from its Supporters to be Distributed at the National Memorial Day Parade

In 1918 Moina Michael was working as a volunteer for the Overseas YMCA War Workers, a program composed of civilians dedicated to providing for the human needs of American Soldiers and their families during World War I. On November 9, 1918 after being inspired by the poem “In Flanders Field”, Michael made a personal pledge to always wear a red poppy as a sign of remembrance for the soldiers who died “while keeping the faith.” Later that day, at a meeting of the organization she handed out red poppies in remembrance of those who died in the war. Michael began selling red poppies to raise money to help support the wounded and deployed soldiers. Soon thereafter the red poppy was recognized by many to be the National Emblem of Remembrance for those who died in service of their country.

Today, many charitable organizations have stepped up to provide for the needs of the American soldiers and their families. One such group is Soldiers’ Angels. In the summer of 2003 Patti Patton-Bader was inspired to found Soldiers’ Angels when her son wrote home from Iraq expressing his concern that some soldiers did not receive any mail or support from home. Within a few short months Soldiers' Angels had grown from a mother writing a few extra letters to an Internet Community with thousands of angels worldwide. Soldiers’ Angels’ purpose is to provide aid and comfort to the thousands of American Service Members stationed wherever the United States raises its flag.

In an effort to raise the awareness of the sacrifices made by the American soldier, Soldiers’ Angels has collected over 5000 American Flags from its supporters. Like the red poppy of Moina Michael, with each flag is a contribution which is in turn used to provide support to the American soldiers and their families. The flags will be distributed by Soldiers’ Angels to people who are watching the National Memorial Day Parade in Washington, DC. Each flag sent to Soldiers’ Angels has a note of well wishes attached to it. Soldiers’ Angels and its supporters hope that each flag will warm the heart of a fellow American and remind them of the sacrifices made for their freedom.

Continuing the time honored tradition of civilian support of American soldiers, as established by individuals such as Michael, Soldiers’ Angels sponsors programs which provide support to American soldiers and their families. Soldiers’ Angels’ programs include first responder packs, support, and laptop computers to wounded soldiers who are receiving treatment at American military hospitals; care packages, letters, and support to deployed soldiers; armored blankets to military ambulances; items shipped for deployed soldiers to give children in the war zone; and memorial trees for the families of soldiers who have died in the service of their country.

If you would like more information about this topic or to schedule an interview with Patti Patton-Bader, please call Don MacKay at (615)676-0239.

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Don MacKay