© Sharon Boswall | No re-blogs to NSFW/18+ blogs please.
I took these photos of Frank Baddeley almost 10 years ago and I often think of him today, as I do so many others. He could always be found at the corner of Peel and rue Ste-Catherine on the days leading up to Remembrance Day pinning poppies on the lapels of passersby who would stop to chat, purchase a poppy or just make a donation. I haven’t seen him for some time but I always remember how charming he was and how even on the coldest days in November he always had a smile and a hello for everyone walking by.
From an old Montreal Gazette article: “Frank Baddeley, 73, has long been a fixture in the downtown core, selling poppies for Remembrance Day annually for 35 years. Poppy sales to benefit Canadian war veterans begin the last Friday in October and run until Nov. 10. On Nov. 11, Royal Canadian Legion members who sell the lapel decorations are busy at the parade and the wreath ceremony, so very few poppies are sold.
Baddeley gets up at 5 a.m. to pick up his fellow poppy vendors and drive them downtown. He is at the corner of Peel and Ste. Catherine Sts. every day at 7 a.m., knocks off for breakfast at 9:30 and is back at his post from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
“I’ve pinned poppies on midgets, on dogs with little scarves and on baseball caps for kids,” Baddeley said.
He has a special trick to get the poppies to stay put: He bends the end of the pin, dangerous work with the sharp end.
“On cold days when I can’t feel my fingers, I donate a lot of blood,” he said with a laugh.“