A veteran from Truro, N.S., who’s worked for many years on the local Remembrance Day poppy campaign, has learned first-hand about where some of those funds go.

Alan MacPherson, 80, is an avid reader and news junkie, but he thought his days of reading were behind him after having a sudden onset of macular degeneration while he slept.

“I went to bed reading the local newspaper here in Truro, and woke up … at 7 a.m. and I was blind,” said MacPherson.

The local legion executive recently used the poppy campaign money to purchase a $3,000 piece of visual technology called a low vision magnifier, which allows him to read again.

“They had no reason to buy it because I would have been dedicated if they didn't get it for me,” MacPherson said. “I would still be dedicated to the legion.’

Executive members say the poppy fund is used to help veterans and their families with things like wheelchair ramps, furnace oil and other necessities.

Getting the magnifier for MacPherson fit the bill perfectly.

“It just made us feel so proud,” said Bill Herron, Truro Legion Service officer. “He actually wept.”

“He's happy, so we're happy.”

MacPherson has plenty of back copies of the local paper to catch up on any news he may have missed. He says the magnifier has reopened an old chapter of his life he thought was closed forever.

“I've got the bible and I've got other material that I can read. I can put anything under there,” said MacPherson. 

MacPherson says he's already looking forward to getting out on the poppy campaign trail again in the fall. Executive members of the legion say it wouldn't be the same without him.

With files from CTV Atlantic’s Dan MacIntosh.