Military

Columbia Museum of Art offers free admission to active duty military personnel

The Columbia Museum of Art is offering free admission for active-duty servicemembers and their families through a partnership with several national military-friendly organizations “We are so grateful to all military families for their service and sacrifice,” says Karen Brosius, CMA executive director. “Free admission is our way to say thank you and to encourage a connection between the museum and these…

Blythewood Historical Society to host veterans tribute Sunday

Residents are invited to Blythewood this weekend to pay tribute to those who have served in the U.S. military. The Blythewood Historical Society is hosting a Memorial Day program complete with flag retirement ceremony on Sunday inside the Langford-Nord House on McNulty Street. Festivities are set to begin at 3:30 p.m. The event schedule includes patriotic readings, public recognition of veterans by branch…

Fort Jackson officials plan to demolish headquarters building

A building that has been standing on Fort Jackson since 1941 is set to be demolished. Fort Jackson will demolish its headquarters building as early as October (Photo provided). The Fort Jackson Headquarters building at 4325 Jackson Blvd. will be torn down in attempt to reduce the number excess structures and save money. The wooden World War II-era building could be…

Photo Gallery: Honor Flight takes 98 South Carolina veterans to Washington, D.C.

  Nearly 100 South Carolina veterans spent Wednesday touring war monuments in Washington, D.C., with assistance from Honor Flight of South Carolina. People cheered and held flags as the veterans boarded the Honor Flight. (photo by Allen Wallace) Veterans of World War II and the Korean War boarded the 21st Honor Flight early Wednesday morning. Their itinerary included stops at the World War II…

Photo Gallery: Fort Jackson celebrates Victory Week, 50th anniversary of Vietnam War

  A thousand recruits marched forward through a cloud of smoke and saluted their families and generals as they became official soldiers and marked the end of their basic training. Wednesday’s Basic Combat Training Graduation Ceremony kicks off Victory Week, and this year’s focus is honoring the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War. “Today you will begin your journey. A journey that will not…

Photo Gallery: Navy veteran opens grocery store to provide fresh food to low-income residents

  Marcus Scarborough could have taken his skills as a nuclear-trained engineer to secure any position he wanted. But the Columbia native and 13-year Navy veteran chose to return home to fulfill the simple need of food security to an underserved part of the population. Scarborough welcomed customers Wednesday to the new Save-A-Lot on Harden Street. His goal for the…

Photo Gallery: Columbia honors Vietnam veterans in annual ceremony

  Several of South Carolina’s leaders took time Friday morning to thank local Vietnam veterans for their service. Veterans and others gathered Friday at Columbia’s Memorial Park for Vietnam Remembrance Day. (photo by Allen Wallace) Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott and Fifth Circuit Solicitor Dan Johnson were among the speakers…

Lexington County to host free exhibit honoring South Carolina’s military fallen

People are invited to learn about those from their community who paid the ultimate price when a traveling exhibit arrives in town next week. Remembering Our Fallen will be available for viewing for two weeks. (photo provided) Lexington County is hosting the “Remembering Our Fallen,” a photo display exhibit telling the story of 89 men and women from South Carolina killed in the…

Midlands residents rally to ‘Save our Fort’

  More than 1,400 residents and elected officials packed Shandon Baptist Church on Thursday to appeal to U.S. Army officials on behalf of Fort Jackson as the threat of roughly 3,100 job cuts looms. “It’s not just a part of our community, it is a part of who we are,” said Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin. “It has, for the last 100 years,…

U.S. Navy Band set to perform in Columbia in March

Columbia will welcome the United States Navy Band this spring as one of 32 cities selected for the groups 2015 National tour. The tour is one of the Navy’s signature outreach programs and will perform across six states. “Community and public outreach is a crucial Departmental activity that reinforces trust and confidence in the United States military and in its…

Midlands plant lands $84 million military contract

A Columbia plant has won a large governmental contract to manufacture weapons for the United States Army. The local plant will be building the M240 style of machine guns. (photo provided) FN America announced this week that it was awarded a new indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity, or IDIQ, contract from the Department of the Army. The company, which is based in Virginia with a…

Soldier dons Santa suit to surprise daughters at Windsor Elementary School

Christmas couldn’t come soon enough for two Windsor Elementary students. The kids learned their daddy made it home from his tour of duty Wednesday afternoon when he surprised them during a special school assembly. “It was definitely worth spending the night at my parents house to see the look on these girls faces today,” said Capt. Joshua Adam Risher, who…

Photo Gallery: Dad returns home from deployment to surprise kids at school

  Three Midlands sisters got a Christmas surprise they’ll remember for years to come when their dad arrived at school Friday after 11 months of military deployment. Six-year-old Casey was the first to see her dad, Andy, who is active-duty military and stationed at Fort Bragg. He arrived at her Lexington-Richland Five school just in time to be the “guest…

National Guard warns of increased noise during flight training exercises

A large-scale joint Army and Air National Guard exercise originating from McEntire Joint National Guard Base in Richland County will take place Friday and Saturday, with increased helicopter and jet aircraft flying. This training means residents in Richland, Lexington, Aiken and Barnwell counties might see and hear F-16 fighter jets, AH-64 Apaches, CH-47 Chinooks and UH-60 Black Hawks Friday and Saturday. The…

Saxe Gotha students video chat with teacher’s deployed husband, fellow airmen on Veterans Day

“Welcome to Afghanistan,” said the voice on the screen. Fourth-graders sitting in the media center at Saxe Gotha Elementary School waved and cheered in response as Col. Rhude Cherry came into focus along with a half dozen other U.S. airmen in his unit. After a few minor technical difficulties, the school and Cherry were connected live Veterans Day morning. Students…

Fort Jackson enacts more restrictive policy for visitors

Visitors to Fort Jackson who do not have a Department of Defense identification card must now be escorted during their entire visit to the base. The change has been made to comply with new Army policy, according to Fort Jackson officials. To obtain credentials for non-escorted access, visitors must apply for a background check through the FBI National Crime Database….

Photo Gallery: Veterans Parade rides down Lexington’s Main Street

Lexington municipalities and veteran groups honored our nation’s finest Sunday on the ground and through the air. The town of Lexington and the Lexington County Veterans Affairs Office kicked off November with the 12th annual Veterans Parade through downtown Lexington. American Legion Post 7, VFW Post 8738 and Kirby Floats also volunteered time and energy to organize the event. The grand marshals for…

Maj. Gen. Becker: Local voices could make difference in potential cuts at Fort Jackson

Fort Jackson’s commander said Wednesday that he is very optimistic about the immediate future of the base but is uncertain about the long term. Maj. Gen. Bradley A. Becker, Fort Jackson’s commander, discusses the base and its future with reporters Wednesday. (photo by Allen Wallace) Maj. Gen. Bradley A. Becker held a round-table discussion with members of the media to…