Veteran's Day

Texas Connects Us: Richland College Honors Veterans With Poppies

At Richland College there are 5,171 red ceramic flowers dotting the landscape.

They're poppies, and each one represents a Texan killed in World War I.

"They're all individual, just like the people they represent," said history professor Clive Siegle. "We wanted to make a real connection."

They're a symbol of sacrifice. Some 500 volunteers helped make the flowers.

"It's a visual reminder of what happened," said ceramics professor Jen Rose, who helped design the flowers.

"When you look at the landscapes of WWI, they're incredibly dismal, just chewed to pieces. Yet in the midst of all that destruction, poppies grew first," said Siegle. "I would suspect if you ask veterans about this, who had been in that war, it would be a remembrance to them. Like looking out over no-man's land and seeing a splash of color. So we're doing that. We're re-creating it."

The tribute is touching to students like Cameron Radford, a veteran himself.

"It makes me sad that so many people had to go through that," Radford said.

The poppies will be sold for $10 each. All the money raised will go to the Puppies Behind Bars organization, which trains inmates to raise service dogs for wounded war veterans.

Contact Us