I attended the Memorial Day Service in Beaufort yesterday, and will attend another service in Cedar Point today. I hope all of you took some time out to remember our many veterans that have served in our military over the years.
The service in Beaufort reminded me of how fortunate we are in Carteret County to have so many people willing to give their time. The featured speaker for the Beaufort Memorial Day service was significantly delayed, so on 5 minutes notice Major General Tom Tempel of Pine Knoll Shores put together some remarks. As Tom put it, he was picked because he was the junior General in the crowd. The quality of his talk did not suffer from the minimum of preparation time.
I say Tom, rather than Major General Tempel because that is the way Tom wants it. Tom says "he is no different than everyone else". The great thing about that comment is that most people in Carteret County feel that way about themselves.
Tom talked about how wonderful Carteret County is because of the caring people that live here. I could not agree more. From Cedar Island to Cedar Point, we have citizens that really care about each other. That is evident from the outpouring of help from all over the county for the people devastated by Hurricane Isabel; the fact that in Red Cross Blood Drives, Carteret County is one of the highest per capita blood donors; the generosity shown in last years ALS Walk ($125,000+ was raised for ALS research); the many volunteer Fire and Rescue squads; and many other organizations/events whose purpose is to help others.
More importantly though is the genuine desire of the majority of citizens to get involved in some activity where they can help others. Some citizens do it through organizations, and others do it as individuals. When you combine this attitude with the natural beauty that we have in this area, we begin to understand why so many of us have chosen to live here.
To all of you that give so much, I say thank you. If any of you want to get involved in volunteer activities and want to know what opportunities are available, be sure to contact me at 252-354-2916 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tom and his wife Elaine devote a lot of time to improving the quality of life in Carteret County, and I appreciate that very much. When you see them, please thank them for their efforts.