Easton Vinje, a Grade 2 student at Kanaka Creek elementary, plants a poppy outside the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 88 on Thursday. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

700 poppies to surround RCL Branch 88 for Remembrance Day

Kanaka Creek elementary students plant the first 65 poppies

A sea of red is growing outside the Royal Canadian Legion Branch 88.

By Remembrance Day, around 700 poppies made of pop tins will surround 25 white crosses bearing the names of fallen soldiers who perished during the First and Second World Wars.

On Thursday, a group of G. Studentrade 2 students from Kanaka Creek elementary planted the first 65 poppies.

Sandi Wight, with the Legion, borrowed the idea from ceramic artist Paul Cummins and stage designer Tom Piper from the U.K. They created the art installation called Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red in the moat at the Tower of London.

“I knew that we couldn’t do 888,246 poppies, but we could do 279 for our fallen citizens of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows,” said Wight.

Craig Mitchell, a teacher at Kanaka Creek, stressed the importance for this generation to learn about the sacrifice soldiers made on their behalf.

“We have joined together the elementary schools and the secondary schools working together to remember the war veterans. The men and women who have fought for us who sacrificed their lives for us. it is very important that the generation today as the generations past never forget,” he said.

Staff and students at Thomas Haney secondary made the poppies and the crosses. The crosses were made by Jared Schuetz, with the help of Daniel Smith and Aiden Stapler.

The poppies were made by Brook Adams, Maddie Allan, Jocelyn Conlon, Marlo Evans and Mr. Page’s teacher’s aid class.

Once the planting was done, students warmed up inside the legion and observed a moment of silence.

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