Military

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: US Army Colonel Retired Kevin Shwedo

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is U.S. Army Colonel Retired Kevin Shwedo. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Shwedo.

Col. Kevin Shwedo. Photo provided. If you ever think you have more going on than you can manage, just google Kevin Shwedo. You may recognize his name as the Director of the S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles, but that is just scratching the surface. Kevin retired from the US Army as a “Full Bird” Colonel and soon took on a…

Midlands Technical College named “Best for Veterans” by Military Times

Air Force veteran David Peacock is a student in MTC’s automotive technology program. Photo provided. Military Times selected Midlands Technical College (MTC) as a Military Times “Best College for Veterans” for 2019. MTC is the only two-year college in South Carolina to receive this designation. “We honor our student veterans and are proud to be named a Military Times ‘Best…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Command Sergeant Major Retired Jim Wertman

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Command Sergeant Major Retired Jim Wertman. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Wertman.

Army Veteran Jim Wertman. Photo provided. This week on the Soldier Salute we get to know US Army Veteran and local businessman Jim Wertman. Jim joined the US Army from Connecticut in 1963, attended basic training at Ft. Dix New Jersey, AIT (advanced individual training), at Ft. Steward Georgia as a 716, and became the Military Occupational Specialty for an…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Chief Tom Bauer of the 282 Army Band

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Chief Tom Bauer, of the 282 Army Band. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with CW3 Bauer.

CW3 Tom Bauer. Photo provided. This week on the Soldier Salute we get to know Chief Tom Bauer of the 282nd US Army Band. Chief Bauer is a native of Clemson, where he joined the US Army in 1996. Bauer had the intention of serving four years to earn some money for college but with his newfound love of his…

Fort Jackson band to perform free concert for Veterans Day

Fort Jackson will celebrate the centennial of the Armistice ending World War One on Nov. 11 with a Veterans Day concert free to the public. The performance will include a choir with bass and percussion, accompanied by organist, Debbie Bauer. The featured band, The Fort Jackson 282nd Band, will perform music by J.S. Bach, Aaron Copland, Marcel Dupré and Maurice…

Purple heart awarded to WWI Sergeant 100 years later

Brig. Gen. Milford H. Beagle, Jr., Fort Jackson commanding general, receives a token of appreciation from Mr. Perry Lloyd following Purple Heart ceremony Show Caption Hide Caption Sgt. Perry Loyd Show Caption Hide Caption Purple Heat Medal Show Caption Hide Caption Brig. Gen. Milford H. Beagle Jr., Ft. Jackson commanding general, Command Sgt. Maj. Jerimiah Gan (right), present Mr. Perry…

Fort Jackson hosts carnival to educate Midlands residents on fire safety

Ft. Jackson carnival 2 Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson carnival Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson carnival 3 Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson carnival 4 Show Caption Hide Caption Photos from previous carnival years, courtesy of Ft. Jackson. Fire Prevention Week is around the corner (Oct. 7-Oct. 13), and Fort Jackson is kicking off the week with a…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: U.S. Army Command Sergeant Major Lamont Christian

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is U.S. Army Command Sergeant Major Lamont Christian. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with CSM Christian.

Command Sgt. Major Lamont Christian. Photo provided by Don Sornson The best thing about having a radio show like the Soldier Salute is all the great service men and women I get the opportunity to meet. This week’s guest is Command Sergeant Major Lamont Christian, and right away I knew that CSM Christian was the kind of Non-Commissioned Officer I…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Army National Guard Sergeant First Class Retired Taz Little

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is S.C. Army National Guard Sergeant First Class Retired Taz Little. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Little.

Sergeant First Class Retired Taz Little In the loving way members of different branches of the military pick on each other, marines are sometimes called “Jar Heads.”  But the same person uttering that bit of a jab will turn and say “Marines aren’t Jar Heads – you can put stuff in a jar.” Sergeant First Class Retired (SFC R) Taz…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: U.S. Air Force Tech Sergeant Retired Dave Peacock

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is U.S. Air Force Tech Sergeant Retired Dave Peacock. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Peacock.

Sgt. Dave Peacock. Don Sornson provided photo. This week on the Soldier Salute, we’re talking to US Air Force Tech Sergeant Retired Dave Peacock. He has had an incredible career and served his country proudly – fulfilling a family tradition that goes back several generations. “My grandfather was an Air Force drill instructor, my uncles were Army in Vietnam, my…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Retired U.S. Army Captain Tom Byrd

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Retired U.S. Army Captain Tom Byrd. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Byrd.

Capt. Tom Byrd. Photo provided by Don Sornson. Retired US Army Captain Tom Byrd talked to us this week about his time in the Army and the Come Meet Your Army Tour that is taking place September 20. Byrd is currently serving as the Community Relations Officer for Fort Jackson and is part of the team that is bringing us…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Specialist Austin Rykbost

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Specialist (SPC) Austin Rykbost. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Rykbost..

Specialist Austin Rykbost. Photo provided by Don Sornson. One of my favorite things about serving in the South Carolina Army National Guard was watching my fellow soldiers’ children grow up. A large number of them have gone on to become soldiers themselves.  One of them is this week’s Soldier Salute guest, Specialist (SPC) Austin Rykbost. It’s been a busy couple…

Fort Jackson’s 5K run/walk to honor fallen soldiers, support their families

Ft. Jackson 1 Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson 2 Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson 3 Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson 4 Show Caption Hide Caption Ft. Jackson 5 Show Caption Hide Caption Last year’s 5K run/walk. Photos courtesy of Fort Jackson. Fort Jackson will soon be holding an annual event that acknowledges the men and women who…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Navy Veteran Brooks Herring

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is U.S. Navy Veteran Brooks Herring. This is a preview of Sornson's interview with Herring.

Herring-feature-photo Show Caption Hide Caption Brooks-1 Show Caption Hide Caption Brooks-2 Show Caption Hide Caption Brooks Herring. Photos provided by Don Sornson. Although I heard the bearded giant perform at various music venues around the Columbia area, I didn’t formally meet U.S. Navy Veteran Brooks Herring until we brought him in the WWNQ 94.3 The Dude studio to help promote…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: S.C. National Guard First Lieutenant Ja’Pa’ Peay

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is South Carolina Army National Guard First Lieutenant Ja'Pa' Peay. This is a preview of Sornson’s interview with Peay.

First Lieutenant Ja’Pa’ Peay. Photo provided. By retired Sergeant First Class Don Sornson When I first met First Lieutenant (1LT) Ja’Pa’ Peay, he was a brand new Private First Class and was assigned to me as part of a detail to work the FLW fishing championship in 2008. I knew he was a special soldier and that he was going…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Brigadier General Milford Beagle Jr.

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Brigadier General Milford Beagle Jr. This is a preview of Sornson’s interview with Beagle.

B.G. Milford Beagle Jr. By retired Sergeant First Class Don Sornson Jr. Brigadier General (BG) Milford Beagle Jr. is a South Carolina native. Born in the upstate region of South Carolina in the small town of Enoree, when asked about himself he keeps it simple. “I’m a son, I’m a soldier, I’m a spouse and I’m a father,” said BG…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Navy Veteran Bobby Hunter

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is U.S. Navy Veteran Bobby Hunter. This is a preview of Sornson’s interview with Hunter, and special guest Kaylee Swanson.

Bobby Hunter. Photo provided by Don Sornson. By retired Sergeant First Class Don Sornson Jr. Petty Officer Bobby Hunter never set out to join the military. Bobby’s father retired from the US Army, and to Bobby, that was not the life for him. “Initially I really didn’t want to go in the military, just that when I started going to…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Marine Corps Veteran Ethan Gardner

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is U.S. Marine Corps veteran Ethan Gardner. This is a preview of Sornson’s interview with Gardner.

Ethan Gardner. Photo used with permission. By retired Sergeant First Class Don Sornson Jr. U.S. Marine Corps veteran Ethan Gardner joined the Marine Corps as an 0311, better known as an infantryman. It wasn’t the same infantryman that you might be imagining though, Ethan was part of a F.A.S.T (Fleet Anti-terrorism Security Team). “We deployed all over the world to…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Marine Corps Veteran Bill Britt

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Marine Corps Veteran Bill Britt. This is a preview of Sornson’s interview with Britt.

Billy Britt.  Photo provided by Don Sornson. By Retired Sergeant First Class Don Sornson Jr. In this edition of the Soldier Salute, we’re featuring U.S. Marine Corps Veteran Bill Britt. Britt is a native of Lexington, who joined the Marine Corps immediately after 9/11. He was part of the initial raids into Iraq and Fallujah in 2003. Although Britt was…

94.3 The Dude’s highlighted soldier of the week: Army Veteran Robert Fitzgerald

94.3 The Dude’s Soldier Salute host Don Sornson conducts a weekly interview with a local member of the Armed Forces. The current soldier of the week is Army Veteran Robert Fitzgerald. This is a preview of Sornson’s interview with Fitzgerald.

Robert Fitzgerald. Photo provided. By Retired Sergeant First Class Don Sornson Jr. You often hear an interview start with the host saying something like, “Robert, we’re glad you could be with us today.” In the case of US Army Veteran Robert Fitzgerald, we are indeed glad to have him with us today. During a combat mission, Fitzgerald sustained a gunshot…

Summer Jam concert Friday to benefit programs for veterans with PTSD

Military supporters and all Midlands residents who enjoy live music are encouraged to attend the Big Red Barn Retreat’s Summer Jam, this Friday evening at DOKO Meadows Park in Blythewood. The benefit will be raising money for the Big Red Barn retreat, which provides free therapeutic services to veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and other combat-related stresses. Veterans…

Army’s Golden Knights perform tandem jump, invite Midlands resident to participate

Sornson 1 Show Caption Hide Caption Sornson 2 Show Caption Hide Caption Sornson and Espinosa Show Caption Hide Caption Sornson landing Show Caption Hide Caption Espinosa with Sornson Show Caption Hide Caption Instructor Jen Espinosa with Sornson. Photos provided. 94.3 The Dude’s Sergeant First Class Retired Don Sornson, host of the Soldier Salute, was invited to participate in a tandem…

Ft. Jackson celebrates 101 years with big party, concert

Fort Jackson 7 Show Caption Hide Caption Fort Jackson 6 Show Caption Hide Caption Fort Jackson 5 Show Caption Hide Caption Sgt. Benjamin Fannin proposed to Jenna Peters Show Caption Hide Caption Michelle Renew, Don Sornson, of 94.3 The Dude with Fannin and Peters Show Caption Hide Caption Fort Jackson 2 Show Caption Hide Caption Fort Jackson 1 Show Caption…