I have talked before about the outstanding reach local businesses have in the community. It should come as no surprise that it is happening again.
The Vietnam Veteran Memorial Wall was dedicated in 1982. During the dedication ceremony, veteran John Devitt was incredibly moved. Because of the emotion he felt, he didn’t feel the power of The Wall should be limited to those who could make the trip to Washington D.C. He set out with fellow veterans to create The Moving Wall. This half size replica of The Wall now travels the country to cities and communities just like ours.
Devitt has always been of the thought that citizens should not have to pay to see The Moving Wall. However, as you can well imagine, the cost involved in creating, maintaining and transporting The Moving Wall can be costly. The answer came in the form of local committees that band together to sponsor the wall when it comes into town.
The committee in here has been chaired by Jan Bass of the City of Richmond Hill and supported by American Legion Post 27 and the Richmond Hill/Bryan County Chamber of Commerce. The committee reached out to the local business community to assist in the funding, logistics and support. They were greeted with an outpouring of resources.
The Moving Wall will be available to the public 24 hours a day from the opening ceremonies on Thursday to the closing ceremonies on Monday. During that time, numerous volunteers are needed to assist those coming to visit The Moving Wall. McKnight Sight and Sound will have an RV on site for those volunteers. Gary Stanberry of the local McDonald’s franchise agreed to supply meals and drinks. Hill of Beans will make sure they all have coffee and Coastal Communications donated water.
There has to be a platform built to support The Moving Wall once it arrives at the Park. Gaster Lumber and Supplies and Rhino Framing have that covered while Tim and Dave’s Nursery is taking care of the landscaping. Signs and programs were needed and PocketMedia said, "Yes." Best Western offered the room for the custodians of The Moving Wall. Plantation Lumber has offered to provide all the chairs and tables. Visitors will be able to look up names on two computers provided by Computer Solutions.
Coastal Electric, Bryan Bank and Trust and Richmond Hill Family Counseling Center made financial contributions. "The money received and the in-kind sponsorships have been amazing," Jan said. "There is no way we could have done this without the support of the community."
One after another, local businesses answered the call to provide for the community. They filled the requested need and then uniformly asked, "Is there anything else we can do?" The Moving Wall brings the opportunity for reflection, remembrance, honor, healing, and history to our town. This was not only made possible by those businesses that agree to be the supporters, but also those who choose to buy local and do business in the community. You folks create a vibrant business community that is financially able to support such events.
Reading this article, you may not be able to comprehend the magnitude of what these businesses, partnered with the local community, have been able to accomplish. After you see it, I have a feeling you will. I can’t wait to hear what you think about it.
April Groves covers all things business for the Bryan County News. You can send thoughts, press releases, tips and questions you’d like answered to firstname.lastname@example.org