They Carried the Torch

By Brian Roulston At the time Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrea of Guelph Ontario did not realize the significance of the poppy as a lasting memorial symbol, he simply observed the poppies growing in an otherwise barren war field and among the graves of the dead soldiers. After writing the poem it is said he threw the poem away. Another soldier picked it up, eventually making its way to the London-based magazine Punch which published it on December 8th,1915. John McCrea would die before ever knowing how it inspired and helped so many, including his fellow soldiers during and after the...

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