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Celebrating (and Honoring) Brightmore of Wilmington’s Veterans

November 19, 2013

The senior living community of Brightmore of Wilmington is a tight-knit one, where residents consider their neighbors friends and, more often than not, can be found enjoying each other’s company.  Our residents have many things in common, and this week we honored 65 men and women for their service to our nation. These individuals represent both military and civilians across all branches of service, protecting our country during times of peace and wartime. On Veteran Day residents of all Brightmore of Wilmington communities came together to honor those who so selflessly sacrificed to protect our freedoms during a special reception.  Joined by staff from Home Instead Senior Care, all veterans were presented with a pin for their service. Phil Bruschi, a retired professor from UNC Wilmington, was also on hand to help honor these individuals and led a discussion about the history of patriotic songs.

Memories of Service

Commons resident John King served as a Navigator in the Air Force during World War II.  Despite being wounded in Germany, his wife recalls his time in the service as one of the highlights of his life. Another Commons resident Helen Shull served as a nurse in the Army at a base in Wisconsin, where she helped American and Japanese soldiers injured during WWII. Bill Parr, a resident of The Kempton Assisted Living at Brightmore served as a tail gunner for the Marine Air Core and had to lay on is stomach to shoot and couldn’t wear a parachute. Leroy Marshburn, a resident of The Kempton, served as a Corporal within the Army.  After peace was declared during World War II he spent part of his service in Japan helping to restore peace and make it safe for all.

Veterans Residing at Brightmore of Wilmington:

Hank Bredeck – Army PFC David Buis – 82nd Airborne/Army Paratrooper – Staff Sgt. Robert Butler – Army PFC Felix Cooper – Army Staff Sgt./Reserves as 2nd Lt. Ken Cummings – Marines PFC Tom Edwards – Navy Lt. Bill Faris – Army Reserves Staff Sgt. Charles Gaeta – Air Force Private Barbara Gardner – Navy WWII Storekeeper 1st Class Tommy Garner – Navy Bill Lowe – Army Private E-4 George Lucht – Infantry Army 1st Lt. Gene McLeod – Army Korean War, as Maintenance Officer of a Combat Engineer Group, with the rank of First Lieutenant Lee Messner – Army Sgt. In Charge of Anti-Aircraft & Tank Hazel Mu – Navy Nurse Jack Ormond – Army PFC 13th Airborne Div. & 11th Airborne Div. (Japan) Rex Overlin – Marines Sgt. Major 1942-1966 LeRoof “Bud” Poythress – Navy, Chief Warrant Officer James Rinier – Army Agricore Walter Sheffield – Air force Pilot Major 1941-1945 (In Pearl Harbor) Elbert Thomas Townsend – Army Sgt. & Air force Major – Weather Forecaster and Navigator Gale Wendle – Army Infantry PFC & T-5 John Wheeler, Jr.-Army Charles Wilbur-Navy Marion Beisler– Cadet Nurse Robert Cook–Marines Frank O’Brien–Army Sergeant WWII John Solano– Air Force Chaplain Robert Weeks – Navy

Veterans Residing at The Kempton at Brightmore Assisted Living:

Graham Drew – Air Force Sergeant Bill Parr – Marine Air Core Eileen Cummings – Navy Nurse Leroy Marshburn – Army Corporal Dr. William Rippy – Army (World War II) and Navy (Korean War) Grace Sharkey – WAVES, Lieutenant.

Veterans Residing at The Kempton at Brightmore:

Myrtle Bergeman – Army Sergeant Dot Cushing – Air Force Corporal Bob Damarodas – Air Force First Lieutenant Jim Fairfull – Royal Air Force Leading Air Craftsman Herb Fox – Army Private First Class Ben Glisson – Navy Sailor Everett Gourlay –  Navy Seals/Underwater Demolition Team Anne Gourville – Army Medical Corps/Nurse John Gourville – Air Force and Army Corporal Bobby James – Navy Signaler Walter Johnson – Air Force Private First Class Fred Little – Air Force Ground Crew Orrin Macy – Army Sergeant Irene Montreuil – Navy Victor Olson – Army Sergeant Harold Peabody – Air Force Navigator Vince Ricciardi – Army Private First Class Helen Shull – Army 2nd Lieutenant San Slack -Army Lieutenant Charlie Smith – Army 82nd Airborne/Paratrooper Ranger Co. Staff Sgt. Harry Smith – Navy ET1 Margrette Townsend – Air Force Corporal Charlene Travitsky – Army Lieutenant Fulton Tucker – Army Military Police Piggy Weyers – Army Corporal Al Wingfield – Navy 2nd Class Les Meredith – Army Private Hagan Draughn – Navy Metal Smith 1st class Petty Officer Joe Shae – Navy Petty Officer 2nd class

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Brightmore of Wilmington

2324 41st Street
Wilmington, NC 28403


The Kempton

2298 S 41st Street
Wilmington, NC 28403


The Commons

2320 S 41st Street
Wilmington, NC 28403