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City of Bamberg honors veterans Print E-mail
Written by Jerry E. Halmon   

“We all sacrificed our bodies and time away from our families,” Michael Reid, Retired Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant told a group of approximately 30 veterans, their family members and visitors at the City of Bamberg Veteran’s Day Program held at the Bamberg Civic Center, Friday morning. “I sacrificed my body and time and wouldn’t take back a thing. I was honored to do it for my country,” Reid said.

Reid, who currently serves as the Campus Pastor for the Cornerstone Church in Bamberg told the audience about growing up in an abusive family (physically and mentally), and then turning to a life of drugs, alcohol and crime.

Reid noted the day he went to boot camp, “was the start of [his] being here today.” He said the military provided him with another, “structured environment.” It was there that he learned about, “honor, courage and commitment.” “I will never forget boot camp,” he said.

Reid spent 21-years in the Marine Corps as what he described as a, “Christian Marine,” and stated that God prepares our yesterdays for today. “I learned all these things because God was preparing me for today. He prepares us, it was God’s plan that I be here today.”

Pastor Reid told those in attendance to keep those military personnel that are currently servicing in their thoughts and prayers. “When you go home tonight, pray for those people that are still sacrificing,” he said. Again, Reid reminded the audience that he was thankful for what he went through in service, his country, for the veterans and for their service. “I wouldn’t change a thing that I went through. Thank you for what you went through. May God bless you, this is a great country.”

During the program, a number of veterans or their family members were able to introduce themselves and express their thoughts on the day. Veteran Camille Hodge noted that serving in the military was one of the, “best and worst,” things to happen to him. “We need to know what [benefits] we are entitled to as veterans,” Hodge said, and adding, "there are a lot of programs out there for veterans that we don’t know about.”

Veteran James Huggins, who served in Okinawa and was shot in the head and suffered a broken leg, said he was, “glad to be here as a veteran and proud of our country.”

Veteran Earl Matthews, who served in the Bamberg National Guard, noted he was, “glad he served and of the country we live in.” Decorated Navy Veteran Ernie Corbin spoke of his experience in the Strait of Gibraltar. The Advertizer-Herald Publisher Joyce Searson spoke on behalf of her late brother Veteran Daniel Allen Montgomery, who served in the United States Navy on the USS Richmond K. Turner, saying she was proud of him and proud to be an American.

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