Mayor Ed Hatley used the occasion to recognize several veterans who he said have meant a lot to him personally and to Lincolnton and Lincoln County. Hatley was the speaker for a ceremony held on the Courtsquare following the Veterans Day Parade Monday.
Among those Hatley lauded were his father-in-law who served in World War II; another WWII vet, Lewis Heavner, who wasn't present; Marine Corps vets Dale Punch and Chris Duschel and Veteran of the Year Walt Shrum.
"These and other veterans not only served our country when they were needed, they came back and continued to serve important functions in the community." Hatley said Shrum, who operated Walt's Lock & Key, "helped me get into my car and my house on numerous occasions." He said Heavner was assistant superintendent when he first worked as a principal in the Lincoln County Schools. He thanked Punch for bringing Medal of Honor winners to Lincolnton every year, and said Duschel, who worked at the school bus garage for over a dozen years now helps keep veterans on the road by repairing their cars when they can't afford most repair shops.
Shrum was recognized as the Veteran of the Year, and a special award was presented to Veterans Service Officer Alex Patton for his work in helping vets. Ed House said Patton goes beyond the call of duty--as the board chairman of the Hesed House homeless shelter and by trying to help veterans in ways well beyond what is required for his job.
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