There wasn’t a seat left in the Summerland Legion and the soup offered by donation was sold out in less than an hour on Sunday, as locals came to show their support after the devastating break-in on Remembrance Day night.
“I can’t belief it, how Summerland has pulled behind us,” said branch president Marg Lynum on Sunday. “Our community is so wonderful.”
On Sunday, Lynum didn’t know how much was raised at the fundraiser but from the look of how busy it was, she thinks they will at least recoup the cash stolen from the break-in which totalled over $700.
Legion Chef Andy and his wife offered to pull together the soup and bun by donation on Sunday to try and recover some of the losses the Legion experienced from the break in and theft of all their Remembrance Day and poppy donations.
Thieves broke into the Summerland Legion on the night of Remembrance Day, stealing all the donations of the day as well as poppy donations that were meant to go to Veterans and veterans programs.
“I am reluctant to call these evil people ‘sophisticated thieves,’ but they had obviously cased the branch on Remembrance Day in order to disable the security system and quickly get in and out without detection,” past Legion president John Dorn said.
“They brought substantial break-and-enter tools to jimmy the doors and pry open the ATM. One can only hope one of these persons, realizing they have stolen money designated to aid veterans, has a change of heart and does the right thing,” Dorn added.
The thieves managed to kill the alarm before it went off and they destroyed the security equipment.
For Lynum, the brazen, cruel crime left her heartbroken.
“I cried to tell you the truth when I found out we were robbed because everyone here works so hard for Remembrance Day and we were just getting back on our feet from COVID. We had such a great day on Friday and to come in the next morning to that crime…” Lynum added.
The crime came after a beautiful Remembrance Day ceremony held at Memorial Park on Friday, which was followed by a well-attended lunch at the Legion, served up by Chef Andy and his wife Lorraine.
“Our veterans need continued support as well as the community donations the Legion makes each year through donations such as bursaries to our high school students, donations to our food bank, donations to our cadets and other child organizations,” said a post on the Legion’s Facebook.
The Legion will be still taking donations during the week. After some discussion, they also decided to start a Gofundme page with over $2,400 raised in less than five hours.
You can find the Gofundme at ‘The Summerland Legion recover from theft.’
If you would like to mail in a donation by cheque, you can mail it to:
Summerland Legion Branch 22
PO BOX 370
V0H 1 Z0