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Branch 176, 58 Albert St., Forest, Ontario N0N 1J0
The Ladies Auxiliary to Branch 176 Canadian Legion received its charter in May 1937. However, after the formation of the Legion Branch in 1930, about twenty ladies formed a local organization to assist the branch, remaining as such until it entered the Provincial Command in 1937. Mrs. Archie MacDougall was the first chartered President. Charter members were the officers and four ex-servicewomen. Mrs. George Down, Miss E. Augustine, Mrs. E. Quinn, Nursing sisters, and Mrs. J. Davison W.A.A.C.
Other members accepting the charter: Mrs. W. Stonehouse, Mrs. J. Stonehouse, Mrs. C. Morris, Mrs. E. Bond, Mrs. L. Gale, Mrs. A. Classen, Mrs. I. Scott, Mrs. C. Davidson, Mrs. D. McPherson, Mrs. R. Spurr.
At the outbreak of the war in 1939, the members entered into several wartime projects – sewing and assisting at Blood Donor Clinics for Red Cross in Forest and Camp Ipperwash. The Navy League of Canada’s appeal for comforts for Merchant seaman resulted in packing over 300 “Ditty Bags” containing soap, razor blades, socks, etc. The Auxiliary later received the Navy League’s Certificate of Merit.
In 1944 the Branch moved to their new quarters on Front Street. The ladies helped with the furnishings of the rooms and kitchen. The primary work of the Auxiliary is to support and assist the Legion, that adequate provision is given to all ex-servicemen and their dependants.
In 1945-6 local servicemen were welcomed home and several war brides entertained. The Auxiliary supports the Canadian Legion and Auxiliary Scholarship Fund, which enables sons and daughters of ex-servicemen to further their education at University.
In 1950, the Auxiliary presented the Branch with a silk Union Jack and in 1956 appropriate drapes for the Memorial Tablet. Westminster Hospital, the home of many forgotten men of World War I, is remembered with donations of money for extra “treats” and a lonely patient adopted. Local veterans hospitalized and cared for. Membership has increased considerably since formation. Under the leadership of President Mrs. Robert Johnson, the younger members cater each month for the Chamber of Commerce dinner, help in community campaigns, continue the work for the handicapped veterans that the country in which we live may ever be worthy of the sacrifice they made.