HAMLET — Bill Miller was “a slick-sleeved private” when he met Marine Corps drill instructor Wayne McIntyre 48 years ago on Parris Island.
The now-retired Marines reconnected several years ago in Richmond County and have been friends since. They sipped stories and shared stories about the Corps on Saturday afternoon as local veterans gathered for a celebration in their honor.
About 100 people turned out for the event, held at the National Guard Armory on Boyd Lake Road. Organizers treated veterans to a meal of hot dogs, hamburgers and fries, and representatives from the Veterans Affairs hospital in Fayetteville were on hand to offer health care and housing assistance services.
Richmond County Sheriff James E. Clemmons Jr. thanked veterans for their service along with local AMVETS and Military Order of the Purple Heart chaplain the Rev. Charlie Taylor, pastor of Timbers Crossing Free Will Baptist Church. State Rep. Ken Goodman, D-Richmond, offered brief remarks, and Rep. Garland E. Pierce, D-Hoke, and Sen. Gene McLaurin, D-Richmond, were also in attendance.
Veterans’ advocates Rena Shedrick-Marshall, Patricia Davis and Stan Stellars coordinated the free public event.
— Corey Friedman