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Lufkin VFW Post, Auxiliary gear up for ‘Buddy’ Poppy Week

Updated: May. 22, 2021 at 5:44 PM CDT
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LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - The Buddy Poppy fundraising campaign is about to begin.

On Thursday, May 27, volunteers and members of the Lufkin Memorial VFW Post 1836 and Auxiliary will be at several businesses around town, like Brookshire Brothers, Tractor Supply, and Walmart, to give this special flower to members of the public and tell its story.

“The ‘Buddy’ Poppy is a symbol to our veterans to the comrades they left behind that did not make it back with them,” said Gerald Spradlin, the VFW Post 1836 senior vice commander. “Every ‘Buddy’ Poppy is made by disabled veterans, and they are paid to make the ‘Buddy’ Poppy and have since 1924. Buddy Poppy’s are free. They are handed out to remind everybody to remember the comrades that were left behind and the families that were affected.”

Starting at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 27, the “Buddy’ Poppy Extravaganza is scheduled at the VFW Post located at 1800 Ford Chapel Road in Lufkin to raise money and benefit local veterans in need.

“You can eat and dance!” said Auxiliary President Judy Conner.

“We’ll have a barbecue-catered dinner, a live band, a live auction, and a silent auction, and once again, 100 percent of the money we are raising this year from the Buddy Poppy is going back to our veterans,” Spradlin said. “So no costs of any of the events are we using any of the money from the Buddy Poppy’s for. We have had local community involvement that has stepped in and graciously donated everything for us so 100 percent of it can go back to veterans.”

Conner and Spradlin said they appreciate the support, and they look forward to continuing to serve veterans and the community.

“Buddy Poppy comes every Memorial Day weekend,” Spradlin said. The money from Buddy Poppys is restricted money that can only be spent on our veterans and veterans’ families. We’re all here because they fought for us, and a lot gave the ultimate sacrifice for us. We’re lucky enough to have this dinner and be able to do this for them because of the sacrifices they made.”

Click here to purchase tickets for the Buddy Poppy Extravaganza hosted by the Lufkin Memorial VFW Post 1836 & Auxiliary.

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