I wish to thank you for your news accounts of the French award of the Legion of Honor medal for my service in France in World War II. It was a tremendous surprise to me and something I am extremely proud and honored to wear. The ceremony was in the French Consulate in Atlanta on Jan. 12, and included other World War II veterans.
However, I wish to mention the local reaction here in Beaufort. It makes me especially proud and pleased to be aware of the depth of feeling there is in the local community for this particular award, and it's a matter of intense pride for me that so many people have expressed in letters, phone calls and personal contacts their recognition of this occurrence.
I have been deeply grateful for the many handshakes and warm comments that I have received. This includes many, many people with whom I am not personally acquainted. Many people stopped me on the streets, crossed to my table in restaurants, and had the courtesy and kindness to express their feelings to me.
It shows what a warm, friendly and patriotic community we have. God bless them, everyone.
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And my personal thanks to the members of The Beaufort Gazette and the video station for their part in this event. And my thanks to Mark Hammond, our S.C. Secretary of State, who even sent me his best wishes.