ARNOLD’S COVE, N.L. — MCpl Roger Snook says the poppy is the ultimate symbol of the sacrifice and remembrance.
Snook retired from the military last July after 35 years of service, including two tours of duty in Afghanistan.
“I’d do it all over again,” he says.
Snook was distributing poppies at the Foodland in Arnold’s Cove last week ahead of Remembrance Day. He says this is the first time he’s volunteered.
Snook says he wants to help support the poppy program as much as he can, especially when he thinks of other veterans and their memory.
In a unique choice, Snook chose to wear the uniform of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment in the First World War.
He did this, in part, to honour the memory of Pvt. John Charles Piercey of Sunnyside, killed in the Battle of Beaumont Hamel on July 1, 1916.
Piercey’s sacrifice was “forgotten”, until the community worked to have his service recognized about five years ago with his name on a monument in Sunnyside.
“I researched everything there was to research on him,” explained Snook. He says Piercey was one of the soldiers who made it past the “Danger Tree” and was cutting wire on the fences when he was killed.
“That’s part of the reason why I’m wearing this uniform, but it’s also to represent all soldiers that didn’t make it back home during World War One, Two, the Korean War and the Afghanistan and Gulf war.”
He says he’s proud to contribute his time to the poppy campaign and will continue as long as he’s able.