To The Bravery and Courage of Those Fallen – Reflections of Memorial Day

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This weekend is a time of reflection and remembrance to those that gave the ultimate sacrifice.? A life of honor is a life fulfilled.? Each one of those men and women that dedicated their lives to a great unknown with the sole purpose of giving us the freedom to breathe the air of freedom, we will not forget you.? Sometimes pictures say all the words you need.

To those brave individuals that carry on the legacy of those fallen, we stand beside you with pride and hope, so that one day, you may never need to fight again.

To all the mothers, fathers, children, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and great-grandparents that gave their mind, body and soul to raising the flag of hope for a better tomorrow, we share in your fears and keep you deep in our prayers.

Quotes and Images of Devotion, Dedication and Commitment – We honor the past, the present and future

F”reedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirit of men and so it must be daily earned and refreshed – else like a flower cut from its life-giving roots, it will wither and die.” ~Dwight D. Eisenhower

“The patriot’s blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree.” ~Thomas Campbell

“Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.” ~Abraham Lincoln

“Those who expect to reap the blessings of freedom, must, like men, undergo the fatigue of supporting it.” ~Thomas Paine

“In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved.” ~Franklin D. Roosevelt

“Let freedom never perish in your hands.” ~Joseph Addison

“Every human has four endowments- self awareness, conscience, independent will and creative imagination. These give us the ultimate human freedom… The power to choose, to respond, to change.” – Stephen R. Covey

“I stand for freedom of expression, doing what you believe in, and going after your dreams.” – Madonna

“Freedom is the will to be responsible to ourselves” – Friedrich Nietzsche

“History does not teach fatalism. There are moments when the will of a handful of free men breaks through determinism and opens up new roads.” ~Charles de Gaulle

“A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.”?–Joseph Campbell

“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.”?–Elmer Davis

“Own only what you can always carry with you: know languages, know countries, know people. Let your memory be your travel bag.”?–Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

“The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example.”?–Benjamin Disraeli

“Sweet is the memory of distant friends! Like the mellow rays of the departing sun, it falls tenderly, yet sadly, on the heart.”?–Washington Irving

“Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking the form of readiness to die.”?–G.K. Chesterton

“For love of country they accepted death.” —James A. Garfield

“These heroes are dead. They died for liberty – they died for us. They are at rest. They sleep in the land they made free, under the flag they rendered stainless, under the solemn pines, the sad hemlocks, the tearful willows, and the embracing vines. They sleep beneath the shadows of the clouds, careless alike of sunshine or of storm, each in the windowless Place of Rest. Earth may run red with other wars – they are at peace. In the midst of battle, in the roar of conflict, they found the serenity of death. I have one sentiment for soldiers living and dead: cheers for the living; tears for the dead.” —Robert G. Ingersoll

“And I’m proud to be an American, where at least I know I’m free, and I won’t forget the men who died, who gave that right to me and I’ll proudly stand next to him to defend her still today, ‘cuz there ain’t no doubt I love this land, God bless the USA.” -Lee Greenwood

“The story of America’s quest for freedom is inscribed on her history in the blood of her patriots.” -Randy Vader

“The dead soldier’s silence sings our national anthem.” -Rev. Aaron Kilbourn

“Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.” -John F. Kennedy

“They are dead; but they live in each Patriot’s breast, and their names are engraven on honor’s bright crest.” —Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Battle of Lovell’s Pond

“The patriot’s blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree.” —Thomas Campbell

“And they who for their country die shall fill an honored grave, for glory lights the soldier’s tomb, and beauty weeps the brave.” —Joseph Rodman Drake

“Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened.” -Billy Graham

You are all Heroes!!!

Photos:? National Military Cemetery – Beaufort, South Carolina

 

 

 

 

National Medal of Honor Museum Underway in Charleston, South Carolina

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A national treasure that will commemorate our best and bravest who serve as an inspiration to all Americans.

The Medal of Honor is our nation’s highest and most prestigious military decoration. Presented to roughly 3,500 recipients since its founding during the Civil War, the medal symbolizes the timeless American ideals of courage, patriotism, sacrifice, integrity, and humility.

The stories of Medal of Honor recipients, demonstrating bravery in combat at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty, serve as a beacon to all Americans. These legacies deserve a permanent home on the national landscape. The National Medal of Honor Museum, to be located on the banks of Charleston Harbor in South Carolina, will be their home.

You can help make the museum a reality. Please consider donating today.

Official Website

Donation Details

About the Museum

The museum will offer an experience that draws personal and emotional connections to Medal of Honor recipients and their stories, while shedding light on the wars in which they fought and the ideals that the Medal of Honor represents. Visitors will come to understand the meaning and price of freedom—and appreciate the virtue of putting service above self.

The National Medal of Honor Museum will also include an education center aimed at character development in our nation’s youth. A critical part of our mission will be to use the stories of our Medal of Honor recipients to inspire young people, and motivate them to be their best selves.

In concert with the Medal of Honor Society, the National Medal of Honor Museum—at the museum itself and virtually—will include a robust educational component aimed at youth character development. Designed by teachers, the Character Development Program will provide students with opportunities to explore the concepts of courage, patriotism, sacrifice, integrity and humility, and how these values can be exemplified in daily life.

 

Charleston, S.C. History in Pictures – A Look Back

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Folly Beach, SC

It is often said, a picture tells a thousand words.? Some of these images really paint a vivid picture of the trials, tribulations and celebrations of our past.? Some will bring you to levels of emotion both good and bad.? Sit back and remember to never forget our past.

From Civil Rights to military; academics to activism; or just a day at the beach.

Enjoy this wild journey into Charleston’s past.

Tree Spirit Project 2011 - Preserve Angel Oak
Tree Spirit Project 2011 – Preserve Angel Oak

 

73 Church Street (with rounded top door behind tree) – 1958

 

Early Mobile Free Library
Early Mobile Free Library

 

Bishop England Varsity High School Basketball Team – Charleston, SC

 

!950’s South Carolina Map
Post Earthquake Charleston 1886
Post Earthquake Charleston 1886

 

Early South Carolina Currency
Early South Carolina Currency

 

Folly Beach Barracks – 1946

 

Broad and Meeting Streets Traffic
Broad and Meeting Streets Traffic

 

Folly Beach Postcard
Folly Beach Postcard

 

Charleston March 1969
Charleston March 1969

 

Charleston Hospital Strike Article
Charleston Hospital Strike Article

 

Folly Beach Pier – 1937

 

!976 Charleston
1976 Charleston

 

Roadside Sweetgrass Basket Sales
Roadside Sweetgrass Basket Sales

 

1961 at Albemarle Elementary School
1961 at Albemarle Elementary School

 

Fort Sumter Stamp 1961
Fort Sumter Stamp 1961

 

The C-141 Starlifter
The C-141 Starlifter

 

1961 Civil Rights Bus in Charleston assaulted
1961 Civil Rights Bus in Charleston assaulted

 

Charleston Submarine Base 1960
Charleston Submarine Base 1960

 

Easter 1960's Charleston, SC
Easter 1960’s Charleston, SC

 

Broad Street, 1911. Notice the signs for Follin Bros. tobacconists (with the famous wooden Indian) and Henry Plenge’s (the P has fallen from the sign) Pharmacy at 8 Broad

 

“Folly Beach July 4, 1921.”
three unidentified beach goers in front of their car on the beach at Folly. They are all wearing bathing suits and the women are wearing stockings and hats. The date and location listed above are hand written on the back.
Source: The Charleston Museum

 

Corner of Fishburne St and St Philips intersection in 1944.

 

W.A. Jessen’s liquor store, corner of Congress and Rutledge in 1940’s. This location is now a lawyer’s office.

 

This is circa early 1940s postcard published by Martschink Sales Co.

 

 

Hasell Street, Charleston SC, ca. 1900 – 1910

 

Charleston, SC 1910

To Our Heroes – Emotional Military Reunion, Proposal and Family Videos that Will Make You Cry

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“He called her on the road; From a lonely, cold hotel room; Just to hear her say I love you one more time; But when he heard the sound; Of the kids laughing in the background; He had to wipe away a tear from his eye; A little voice came on the phone; Said, “Daddy when you coming home?”; He said the first thing that came to his mind; I’m already there”Lonestar

We go to movies, read comics, watch television shows of characters of supernatural strength and odd superpowers and call them heroes.? Every day, hundreds of thousands of children, wives and husbands go to bed alone while their heroes are in foreign lands protecting our freedoms.? We wanted to show our appreciation for their sacrifices by sharing some very emotional videos or gratitude, reunion and love

To all our military around the world, we thank you and think about you every day.

Disclaimer:? Have some tissues available.? You will need them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfJgfUAr2M8

In war, tragedy, disaster and yearning, the one foundation that leads us to the light is the ability to always love.? It is the most powerful weapon of humanity and one that keeps us holding on.? We hope these videos remind you of the power of love.

Show Your Patriotism Charleston: The 2017 National Care Letter Campaign To Honor Service Members and Veterans Is In Full Swing

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Help Us Honor Veterans and Deployed Service Men and Women this Holiday Season?by Sharing a Card or Letter in Appreciation of their Service and Sacrifices.?

CARE LETTERS WILL BE ACCEPTED THROUGH 18 DECEMBER 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. – 2017 marks the seventh year that America’s Adopt A Soldier ? will reach out to America to ask for cards of thanks to share with our nation’s Service Members who are deployed and Veterans who are in State Veterans Homes and Hospitals.

According to Mary Keeser, America’s Adopt A Soldier? Founder, “In 2016, over 120,000 care letters, were shared. This year, the goal is to reach over 300,000, which would allow us to send at least four letters to every Veteran in a Veterans Home or Veterans Hospital as well as to our deployed Service Members.”

Mary adds, “The cards and letters we receive are drawn or written by a diverse group of individuals, from 3 years-old to the over 100 years- old. From kitchen tables to classrooms, to businesses, to college dorms to faith-based establishments, the pens, pencils, crayons and pieces of paper used to create messages of hope, appreciation, unity and support will have a positive impact. The letters of care are truly the caring pulse of America towards our Service men and women.”

To participate in the 2017 National Care Letter Campaign, mail your personal written and designed letter or greeting card to America’s Adopt A Soldier, 5400 Shawnee Rd. Ste #300, Alexandria, Va. 22312.

For more information visit: www.americasadoptasoldier.org or call 703-278-3718.

###

America’s Adopt A Soldier ?
5400 Shawnee Road, Suite 300 Springfield VA 22312

“Making a Difference in the Lives of Our Service Members, Veterans, and their Families”
Certified 501c3

www.americasadoptasoldier.org

America’s Adopt A Soldier ? Media Contact:
Mary Keeser, mary.keeser@americasadoptasoldier.org,?703-278-3718

Navy to Christen Littoral Combat Ship Charleston

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The Navy will christen its newest Independence-variant littoral combat ship, the future USS Charleston (LCS 18), during a 10 a.m. CDT ceremony Saturday, August 26, in Mobile, Alabama.

The future USS Charleston, designated LCS 18, honors Charleston, the second-largest city in South Carolina. She will be the sixth ship to be named for Charleston.

The Honorable Richard V. Spencer, Secretary of the Navy, will deliver the ceremony’s principal address. Charlotte Riley, the wife of ten-term, former Mayor of Charleston Joe Riley, serves as the ship’s sponsor. The ceremony will be highlighted by Mrs. Riley breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow to formally christen the ship, a time-honored Navy tradition.

“I am honored to be here as we christen the newest LCS, the future USS Charleston,” said the Honorable Richard V. Spencer, Secretary of the Navy. “Charleston, like the other ships in the LCS program, is going to be highly maneuverable, able to operate where other ships cannot, and will project power through forward presence. The ship and her crew will serve our nation for decades to come, but let us not forget our industrial force whose service makes this great ship possible. I am grateful for the men and women of Austal for their dedication, and to the citizens of Mobile for their support, as we continue to make our Navy stronger.”

The name Charleston has a long and storied history in the U.S. Navy. The first Navy ship to bear the name Charleston was a row galley that defended the coast of South Carolina during the Quasi-War with France. The second Charleston (C-2) was a protected cruiser that received the surrender of Guam during the Spanish-American War. The third Charleston (C-22) was a St. Louis-class protected cruiser that performed escort and troop transport duties in World War I. The ship named Charleston (PG-51) was an Erie-class patrol gunboat that earned the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with one battle star for her service in the northern Pacific during World War II. The fifth Charleston (AKA-113/LKA-113) was an amphibious cargo ship that served during the Vietnam War.

The future USS Charleston is a fast, agile, focused-mission platform designed for operation in near-shore environments yet capable of open-ocean operation. It is designed to defeat asymmetric “anti-access” threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.

The LCS class consists of two variants, the Freedom variant and the Independence variant, designed and built by two industry teams. The Freedom variant team is led by Lockheed Martin (for the odd-numbered hulls, e.g. LCS 1). The Independence variant team is led by Austal USA (for LCS 6 and the subsequent even-numbered hulls).

Each LCS seaframe will be outfitted with a single mission package made up of mission modules containing warfighting systems and support equipment. A dedicated ship crew will combine with aviation assets to deploy manned and unmanned vehicles and sensors in support of mine countermeasures, anti-submarine warfare or surface warfare missions.

The ceremony can be viewed on the Navy Live blog at http://navylive.dodlive.mil.

Media may direct queries to the Navy Office of Information at (703) 697-5342. For more information about the Littoral Combat Ship class: ?http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=4200&tid=1650&ct=4

Roadtrip: Airborne and Special Operations Museum – Fayetteville, NC

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By Mark A. Leon

Just a few hours away in Fayetteville, North Carolina is the Airborne and Special Operations Museum?and it may be one of the most memorable historic museum experiences in the Carolinas. ?With the design and quality of a museum that would make Washington, D.C. jealous, this tribute to the 82nd Airborne out of nearby Fort Bragg and their impact on World War I through today is an emotional ride that will leave you in awe.

We take tremendous pride in honoring those that have served in the South. ?Their dedication and courageous acts will forever be honored. ?To experience not only their contributions, but to put you in their shoes is a remarkable feat that this museum has achieved. ?From the parking lot to the trenches of France and Vietnam, you are transformed to the places where boys became men and freedom was preserved.

Experience the humanity of war, the visual amazement of the scenes of fear and strategic maneuvers and walk through a recollection of 100 years of protecting and preserving freedom around the world.

This is truly a remarkable place for all ages. ?Did we mention it is free.

Take a visual walk in our steps and see why this must be considered for your next road trip

 

Commemorate as you enter

Canine Memorial

 

Paratrooper welcomes you
Main entrance
Medal of Honor database in front lobby

Learn about each campaign
Feel like you were part of the action

War torn France
Amazing artifacts
Visually stunning

Be part of the battles

Life in Vietnam

Life and death situations

Viewing Room

Humanitarian efforts

Experience the heart, humanity and courage of war.

South Carolina Ranked as 5th Best State for Retired Military to Live

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Photo credit: Boston.com

Source: WalletHub

 

Florence, SC Veterans Park – An Honored and Respected Tribute to our Military

By Mark A. Leon

By Mark A. Leon

On a rare occasion, you find a place ordained with honesty, emotion, respect and admiration.? A place that pays tribute to those dedicated contributors who put their lives on the line to stand beside the flag of freedom.? On this, our Memorial Day Weekend, we had a chance to take a solemn walk through the Florence Veterans Park and pay tribute to the branches of military and their continued dedication to the preservation of freedom.

The following pictures will paint a beautiful picture, but walking through this pristine park, we were honored to say this is a testimony to the commitment South Carolina places on the importance of military service and the honor it deserves.

To the City of Florence and all the people that made this park possible, thank you and for all those that have and continue to wear the uniform proud, we are indebted to you and your service.

If you have not visited this park, located just over two hours northwest of Charleston, we urge you to spend time here.? This is a park that we would categorize in the level of some of the most cherished tribute parks in Washington, D.C.

Take a virtual walk with us through Florence Veterans Park

 

 

Saluting the Flag
Saluting the Flag

 

Center courtyard monument
Center courtyard monument

 

Memorial Fountain
Memorial Fountain

 

Purple Heart Monument
Purple Heart Monument

 

Memorial Wall
Memorial Wall

 

 

Sailor's Creed

 

USS South Carolina Bell
USS South Carolina Bell

 

MIA Memorial
MIA Memorial

 

 

Merchant Marine
Merchant Marine

 

Armed Forces
Armed Forces

 

Flags of Pride
Flags of Pride

 

Daughters of the American Revolution
Daughters of the American Revolution

 

The Marine Corps
The Marine Corps

 

 

 

The Oath of Enlistment
The Oath of Enlistment

 

Desert Storm
Desert Storm

 

Branches of the Armed Forces
Branches of the Armed Forces

 

U.S. Navy
U.S. Navy

 

Family Reunited
Family Reunited

 

 

9/11 Pentagon Memorial
9/11 Pentagon Memorial

 

 

To those that have served, we thank you.

 

 

Local US Army Veteran succumbs to PTSD: loses Life, but leave a legacy of love behind

By Brian Vosicky
About a year and a half ago, I wrote an article for the Island Packet about my personal experiences with PTSD and how the USCB Sand Sharks Veterans club helped unite fellow servicemembers who may be struggling to cope with civilian life.? I spoke about the deepest wounds being unseen and that many people aren’t fully aware of the severity of the problem until it is too late to act.

 

On March 31st, Nick Becker – US Army combat veteran, USCB student, SSV member, and my friend – tragically succumbed to his hidden wounds and took his own life. ?

 

Nick was loved tremendously by all who knew him.? Known best for his witty sense of humor and Chesire-cat grin, he was always a bright light in the room.? People would naturally gravitate towards his magnetic charm.? He was incredibly intelligent, compassionate, fearless and had a true warrior spirit.

 

Nick was one of the first friends I made at USCB.? Despite the style and class I may exude in my writing, I do not always seem as approachable in person – Nick saw right through my grizzled demeanor from the beginning.? There’s an old saying that war veterans can recognize the “thousand-yard stare” in the eyes of a fellow vet, so perhaps he saw that I was struggling, too. ?

 

We bonded while exchanging a few war stories, often making light of sometimes darker subject matter.? It was cathartic for both of us to share our toughest experiences with each other, knowing that we were safe to fully express what we were going through without a fear of social repercussions.? It helped me a lot – I wish I could have helped him even more. ?

 

While I had no problem committing to SSV community outreach efforts on my own, it was always an added bonus to discover that Nick was going to attend the event as well.? There was never a dull moment with him around.? Even while picking up trash after festivals in Old Town Bluffton, Becker would always manage to find some cold brews for the group to enjoy.? He was always a people-pleaser who was never afraid to roll up his sleeves. ?

 

Above all else, I truly admired his moral character.? He was a fellow proponent for the sciences, secular humanism, skepticism, globalism, liberty, and justice.? Like me, he despised hypocrisy, so he always made sure to practice what he preached. ?

 

He was a friend to all and a protector of the weak.? While we shared many similar views on politics, religion, philosophy, business, and ethics, I most enjoyed when we were at odds.? His sharp intellect, vast knowledge, and life experiences often challenged my most stringent beliefs.? I will truly miss having that challenge.?

 

I urge all of you to keep fighting for the ones who have already fought for all of us.? When the troops come home and the media coverage fades, the war isn’t over – not for everyone.? Stay vigilant to veteran organizations, donate, volunteer, write to your legislators, and keep reaching out to those you suspect might be suffering in silence.? No one should ever have to feel like they are going through this alone.

 

“My parting words to all of you is to have a sense of humor, the world is a funny place.” -Nick Becker

 

Brian Vosicky is a Marine Corps veteran who served in the Middle East, Europe and Africa. He is a graduate of the University of South Carolina Beaufort. Email him at?vosickybrian@gmail.com.