From the first of November each year, I can be seen proudly wearing My Poppy. I do so for several reasons, and none of them are because its a British thing.
I wear my Poppy because my Grandfather on my mothers side, left a senior post in Woolworth’s (they were the Harrods of the day in the late 30’s and 40’s) to fight as an Infantry officer in the Second World War (on much less pay). He was killed in action in World War Two, and left behind his wife, a son and a daughter (my mother).
My mother (then 13) ended up doing all the cooking and cleaning around the house and looking after her younger brother, whilst her mother (my Nan) went out to work to feed and clothe the family.
I wear my Poppy to remember the sacrifice that all those gave, when fighting and dying in both world wars, the Falklands, both Gulf wars, and Afghanistan (I apologise if there are others that I have not mentioned),
I wear my poppy to acknowledge that sacrifice, that helped advance and protect the freedoms we all take for granted today. These are freedoms than many in the middle east and elsewhere still do not enjoy today.
So Granddad this is for you. I wear my Poppy with Pride for you. I wear my Poppy for the freedoms, your sacrifice, allows me to enjoy. You died long before I was born so I never got the chance to know you, but because of you and those like you, I can live my life a free man.
Thank you Granddad.