Loris High School was full of patriotism Saturday as the 3rd annual Salute to Loris American Heroes Veteran’s Day Tribute took place.

The Loris High School Choir performed the National Anthem and a few other selections during the hour-long program organized by Veda Nichols and the Loris Women’s Coalition.

Loris Mayor Henry Nichols, a Marine veteran, had his Marine hat, or “cover’ as he calls it, he said Mrs. Nichols happened to find it in storage a few weeks ago.

“A little later on today, I am going to put on that hat and drink me a good Bourbon,” he joked.

Nichols said his 20-years in the Marines were the best years of his life “as a young man.” He said getting married and having children is the only things that top his military experience.

The guest speaker was S.C. State Senator Greg Hembree who was full of energy once again after suffering a brain aneurysm and pneumonia over the summer.

He said of all the functions performed by government, public safety must remain the number one priority.

“If it is unsafe and you can’t leave your home because it is not safe, it does not matter how bad the roads are,” he said. “A school system becomes secondary if it is unsafe. If you are afraid to send your kids to the building, the quality of the school is really for nothing.”

Hembree then turned his attention to the veterans in attendance.

“It is absolutely true, military service is the highest form of public service any person can give,” the Senator said. “It is important that when we get the opportunity, we take a moment to appreciate them and say a little prayer for those that have been in harm’s way and the ones that are in harm’s way now.”

Mrs. Nichols said the annual program is “a chance to say thank you to our veterans who have valiantly fought and served our country to secure our freedom.”

In the past, it has been an invite-only event but now it is open to anyone who would like to attend.

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