By Max Bowenfirstname.lastname@example.org
Every year, members of the American Legion head to local supermarkets and coffee shops to hand out poppies and accept donations to benefit the community.
But this year, the pandemic and social distancing means those red flowers won’t be seen as much. North Attleborough American Legion Post #49 Commander David Jackson said the money the drive brings in goes to a number of local initiatives. These include sending two boys and two girls to the Boys/Girls State program and two to the Mass State Troopers program. The first program gives teens interested in politics the chance to visit Washington D.C. and the second offers a week-long training with the Troopers. Jackson’s own son took part in the Trooper program and is now enrolled at West Point.
“It has been a great opportunity for my son,” said Jackson of the program.
Since the pandemic began, members of the Legion have only met once to induct Jackson as the new post commander. Normally, they meet at the Elks Lodge, but COVID restrictions meant that they had to relocate to the Plainville American Legion Hall. Jackson said that some members are in the at-risk age range, and so have not been able to attend meetings. Jackson said the meetings are more than a social gathering, as the members are veterans and this gives them a chance to talk to those who can understand their experiences.
“We try to help each other,” said Jackson.
With the Poppy Drive not happening, Jackson said the post is accepting donations to help support the many ways they give back to the community.
Checks made out to “American Legion Post 49” and mailed to:
Sgt. Paul E. Robitaille Post 49
The American Legion
PO Box 3151
N. Attleboro MA, 02760