How a Kamloops girl is commemorating animal war veterans for Remembrance Day | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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How a Kamloops girl is commemorating animal war veterans for Remembrance Day

Leilani Vanderydt, 8, from Kamloops has launched the purple poppy campaign to honour animal war veterans. She sells them at her family's business in Valleyview at Greenhawk Equestrian Sport.
November 09, 2018 - 3:35 PM

KAMLOOPS - Every year, the Royal Canadian Legion launches the Red Poppy Campaign to honour war veterans and their families. 

The red flower is recognized nationally as a symbol to show respect to the men and women who fought in the First World War and every war since then.

But what does the purple poppy mean?

Well, you have to ask Leilani Vanderydt, an eight-year-old from Kamloops who is organizing it.

"I wanted to do it so I could remember the animals and represent them," Vanderydt says.

The fourth grader has her own horse named Bubba, a male Welsh cross pony and she wants other people to remember the hard-working animals that also served in the war.

"A couple years ago I was wondering why we don't remember the animals so I asked my mom and dad and we looked into," Vanderydt says, adding she discovered the purple poppy is a symbol to show respect to animal war veterans in other countries.

Vanderydt's mom, Debbie, says last year her daughter made her own poppies and this year they decided to order poppies.

"Last year she made her own out of paper but we decided this year we would bring them in from Australia," Debbie says. "She's going to donate the money in hopes that we are able to spread the word and maybe other agencies will pick this up."

So far, she's collected more than $200 which will go to the Royal Canadian Legion in Kamloops and Animal Aid.

The fourth-grader sells purple poppies after school at her family's business, Greenhawk Equestrian Sport in Valleyview.

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