Veteran Dexter turned 21 the year he was captured by the Germans

BELLE GLADE — Born in Salt Lake City, Utah in 1924, Veteran Vernon Dexter enlisted in the Army Air Corps because he was a member of ROTC in high school, and he was determined he was not going to be drafted and walk in the Army. When the war started, he said his draft number […]

Veteran LaRose did it for his country

BELLE GLADE — John F. Kennedy said, “And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.” That speech was the inspiration for Veteran Nicholas S. LaRose’s decision to join the Air Force when he was 18 years old. Born in Syracuse, […]

Veteran Rice never did make it to Vietnam

OKEECHOBEE — Bill Rice was born in Red Oak, Iowa which is about 90 miles from Des Moines, but he grew up in Glenwood. His grandparents lived in Emerson, and that is where his father is buried. In 1966, his father moved him and his mother to Fort Wayne Ind., and they “stayed there for […]

County to honor veteran of two wars

OKEECHOBEE — “All of our veterans are heroes to us, but Earl Henry Hansel is special,” Betty Williamson told the Okeechobee County Commission at its June 27 meeting. Mrs. Williamson appeared before the board at their meeting in the Historic Okeechobee County Courthouse to ask the board to honor Cpl. Hansel by naming a street […]

Veteran Glenn served on a helicopter ambulance

OKEECHOBEE — Veteran John Glenn, pastor of Freedom Ranch, was born in San Diego, Calif. His father was in the Navy, and the family moved to Colorado when his dad got out of the Navy. Pastor Glenn went to the University of Colorado and majored in partying and having a good time like most other […]

Veteran Culpepper went where he was told to go

OKEECHOBEE — Veteran Bryant Culpepper was born in Salinas, California, but after a visit to Florida when his grandfather was dying, his mother saw the beach and fell in love with it, he said. They went back home, packed up and moved to Florida. Commissioner Culpepper’s great-grandfather originally came to Belle Glade in 1909 from […]

Veteran Jack Wolff wouldn’t trade his veteran’s life for anything

OKEECHOBEE — Jack Wolff always said his time in the service was kind of fun in a way. Born and raised in Okeechobee, Mr. Wolff graduated in 1944. Two weeks after he graduated, his mother passed away, and two weeks after that he was in the Army. He said he wanted to join the Navy, […]

Elks to host Veteran’s Stand Down June 15

OKEECHOBEE — On June 15, at 8 a.m. the Lake Okeechobee Elks Lodge 2871 at the American Legion Post 64, will host the second Veteran’s Stand Down. The homeless and financially at risk veterans are invited to attend and pick up food baskets of non perishables and gift cards for Publix to purchase perishables. There […]

Veteran Robert Bennett taught English in Vietnam

BELLE GLADE — Veteran Robert Bennett was working his way through college bagging groceries during the 1960s. At that time, they were drafting but joining was more complicated, he explained. You could join for four years, but if you wanted to join the reserves, there was a long waiting list. Above all, he did not […]

Memorial Day services at Ortona Cemetery

GLADES COUNTY — The 2019 Memorial Day Services were hosted by the Farris H. Davis American Legion Post 299. Commander, Jennifer Cook presided over the ceremony. Invocation and benediction were presented by Pastor Charley Watts. The opening ceremony was presented by the Glades County Sheriff Dave Hardin’s Color Guard. Auxiliary Unit 299 presented two Quilts […]