Georgetown Rotary Club Hears About Mercy Flight

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Aug 222014
 

mercy flightSometimes angels in our midst are hard to spot.  One of those here in Georgetown is Glynn Alexander.  Glynn is a volunteer pilot for an organization known as Mercy Flight Southeast. Glynn spoke to the Georgetown Rotary Club on August 12 telling about his experience as a volunteer pilot flying for Mercy Flight.

Glynn helps fly children and adults with painful and life threatening diseases whose only treatment option is a long distance away.  Often times a commercial flight is not an option due to immune deficiency, distance, delay, and financial need.  Glynn is one of 650 volunteer pilots who fly mostly pilot-owned, single-engine, 4-seater planes delivering patients to locations across a 6-state region in the Southeast where they can receive life-giving medical care and treatment, as well as organ transplants.  This dedicated corps of pilots donate their time, talent, airplane, fuel, and operating expenses.

Not only does Mercy Flight provide free transportation for those with medical needs, it also helps with disaster response, and relocating abuse victims.   Asked why he became a Mercy Flight pilot, Glynn said “All it took was to fly one mission – it is incredibly rewarding!”

Glynn said that Mercy Flight is set up to help medical patients who have a financial need; cannot find treatment for their illness locally; need to travel up to 1,000 miles (sometimes on multiple occasions); are chronically ill, but medically stable; are able to climb into a small plane and sit upright; and cannot fly commercially due to the cost, distance, delay, or immune deficiency.

Donors and volunteers are welcomed.  To learn more about Mercy Flight Southeast, go to MercyFlightSE.org, or Facebook.com/Mercy.Flight.SE.   Or call (888)744-8263.

Photo:  Glynn Alexander tells the Georgetown Rotary Club about his volunteer work as a pilot for Mercy Flight.
Aug 112014
 

The Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club recently announced its scholarship winners for 2014-15.  This year’s scholarship recipients were:  Tiffany McCray (Georgetown High School), Spencer Owens (Carver Bay High School), and Taylor Mercer (Mike Rogers Memorial Scholarship).

Kent Vanier, Chairman of the Georgetown Rotary Club’s Scholarship Committee, said the selection process for the scholarship recipients is never easy, but this year’s awards went to some very deserving Georgetown students.  Vanier said the $1,000 scholarships are awarded to senior students from Georgetown and Carvers Bay High schools.  The criteria used in the initial selection process include academic achievement, extracurricular activities, community activities, written description of future personal, educational and professional plans, and a financial needs form.  The schools’ guidance counselors assist in the screening process and the Club Scholarship Committee makes the final decision.

The Mike Rogers Memorial Scholarship was established by the Rogers family to honor Mike Rogers, a sports reporter for the Georgetown Times.  The $500 scholarship is given to a deserving student with an athletic or band background who meet the other criteria for the award.

Georgetown Lunch Rotary Volunteers at Habitat for Humanity

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Jul 202014
 

For most people, cutting the grass and planting shrubbery on a warm, muggy, summer day is not something they look forward to.  But members from the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club jumped at the opportunity to engage in a service project helping Habitat For Humanity finish up a home in the Georgetown community.  The Georgetown Rotarians arrived early Saturday morning and tackled an overgrown lawn, while planting shrubbery around the exterior of the home.   Georgetown Lunch Rotary President Kim Kaminski said “it was a lot of work on a hot day.  But we had fun doing it, and it greatly improved the appearance of the home.  It served as a good example of the Rotary motto ‘Service Above Self.’”

Habitat for Humanity Georgetown County is an ecumenical, Christian-based organization that gives low-income working families a chance by building and providing simple, decent homes in decent communities. A low-income family is scheduled to occupy the Georgetown house in the near future.

Georgetown Lunch Rotary Inducts New Member

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Jun 302014
 

At its June 24, 2014 meeting at Lands End Restaurant, President George Chastain (left) inducts Paul Seccomondi, President of 3V Corporation, as a new member of the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club.  Rotarian and Past President Paul Yarborough (right), who sponsored Seccomandi, looks on.

Jun 282014
 

Pictured, outgoing President George Chastain puts the new President’s pin on Nat Kaminski.  The new officers and directors for the Club are sworn in by Asst. District Gov. Henry Jolly.

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34,000 Rotary Clubs around the world install new officers and directors at the beginning of each Rotary year.  New Officers for the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club were sworn in on June 24th, 2014 for the 2014-15 Rotary Year.  These were Nathan Kaminski, President; Keith Wilcox, President-Elect; Sam Hamilton, Treasurer; John Stalvey, Secretary; and George Chastain, Immediate Past President.

 

The new Directors for the Club are Bill Crowther, Club Administration; , Ray Gagnon, Membership; Anne Hartis, Service Projects; Alan Walters, Rotary Foundation; Ted Kohn and Betty Roberts, Fellowship Activities; Paul Yarborough, Fundraising; Pete Little, Public Relations, and Chris Carter, Sergeant At Arms.

 

Kaminski commended outgoing President Chastain on an “outstanding” year as President of the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club.  “George took steps to strengthen the Club in terms of membership and increase its financial resources available for community service.  Plus the Club had fun and enjoyed accomplishing these things.  We have a strong leadership team in place for the coming year and we are looking forward to carrying on the good work that Rotary does in the Georgetown community”, said Kaminski.

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Georgetown Lunch Awards Rotarian of the Year

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Jun 232014
 

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Pictured is Rotarian Annie Adams and her spouse Joe.  Annie Adams is the Georgetown Rotary Club’s 2014 Rotarian of the Year.  Annie is a mortgage loan officer at the Georgetown Kraft Credit Union and has been a dedicated and involved Rotarian since she joined the Club in 2009.  She served as the Treasurer for several years and continues to assist in training other Rotarians to serve the Club in this critical position.  Despite the fact that Annie lives a very busy life with her work and family, she is always willing to help when called upon.  She has devoted many hours to assisting the Club, and is always amicable and tactful in everything she does.  She is a person who exemplifies Rotary’s motto “Service Above Self” and adheres to Rotary’s 4 Way Test in the way she conducts her life and business.

Commander of Long Bay Power Squadron Speaks at Georgetown Lunch

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May 212014
 

georgetownOn May 13,  John Johnson, Commander of the Long Bay Power Squadron was guest and speaker ay the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club.  This time of the year,  it’s all about boating safety.  The Long Bay Power Squadron is part of a national non-profit organization known as the US Power Squadron which is dedicated to safer boating through education. Johnson told Rotarians that many boaters fail to wear life jackets.   As a result, hundreds of lives are lost in drowning accidents in our waterways.

 

Georgetown Lunch Rotary Donates Dictionaries

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Feb 222014
 

The Georgetown County Dictionary Project is a cooperative effort of the Rotary clubs of Andrews, Georgetown Breakfast, Georgetown Lunch, Murrells Inlet and Pawleys Island that was begun by Alan Walters in 1999. Walters, Past District Governor and a member of the Rotary Club of Georgetown, is shown after distributing dictionaries to third graders at Plantersville Elementary recently. To date, more than 10,000 dictionaries have been distributed to students in Georgetown County.

The Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club has provided dictionaries to all third graders at Kensington, Plantersville and Pleasant Hill elementary schools for the 14th consecutive year. Walters said, “Literacy is a top priority for Rotary clubs worldwide.”

Georgetown Lunch Rotary Celebrates 75th Anniversary

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Dec 042013
 

B Mayer, J Forrester, G Chastain, Scoville 11-19-13Standing in the historic Stewart-Parker House, Mayor Jack Scoville, right, reads an official City of Georgetown proclamation honoring the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club’s 75th anniversary, Tuesday night, Nov. 19.  Proclamations also came from South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and the Georgetown County Council.  Listening from left are Rotarians Bob Mayer and Jim Forrester and 2013-2014 President George Chastain.

Mayor Scoville said he has a greater understanding of Rotary because of recent perceptions gained from his son, John Samuel Scoville, who is president elect for the Rotary Club of Beaufort.  Rotary District 7770 Governor Lou Mello also spoke, recognizing the club for its 75 years of “Service Above Self” in Georgetown.

A June, 1938 Georgetown Times article said, “Twenty members of the Rotary Club were present at the first official function held Wednesday at the Screven Hotel.”  That first Rotary Club was chartered by the Sumter Rotary and its first president was Ralph M. Ford. The club also sponsored the Rotary Club of Andrews in 1967, the Rotary Club of Pawleys Island in 1977 and the Georgetown Breakfast Rotary in 1981.

There was a need for these other service organizations, said long-time member Glennie Tarbox. “Past President Charles Schooler asked me to help get the Pawleys Island group started,” he said. “I intended to be there temporarily, but I ended up as the first charter president and stayed for 30 years before returning to Georgetown to be closer to my business. I really enjoyed going to Rotary meetings because it is so varied.”

Tarbox was asked to chair the 75th anniversary event by current President George Chastain, who said, “I thank the community for its many decades of support, so we can continue giving back to causes that help people in our community and beyond.”

Chastain said the club has assisted a variety of local charities. “These included the Georgetown County United Way, the Georgetown YMCA, the Salvation Army, Outreach Farm, Friendship Place and the Mitney Project,” he said. “We also delivered a dictionary to each third-grade student in Georgetown County in all public and private schools.”

The main fundraising event has been the Rotary Shag Festival, Chastain said. “It is advertised around the southeast and is held annually in April to raise funds to help find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease,” he said. “Since 1996, the club donated more than $100,000–an amount that is second highest of the 78 District 7770 clubs in 25 eastern counties from the Midlands to the coast. The 2014 Shag Festival will be Saturday, April 26, in downtown Georgetown.”

Past Rotary District 7770 Governor Alan Walters is from the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club. “Even though Rotary is a worldwide organization, it remains community-based, which is why it’s important we have several clubs in the county,” he said.  “Each club, just like the community it serves, is unique.”

“During my year as district governor we distributed nearly half a million dollars in scholarships and for club projects here in South Carolina in addition to the programs in each club.  It’s literally millions of dollars each year.  “The bottom line is more clubs mean more opportunities to help others.”

“Our club has been a leader in supporting the Rotary Foundation with donations of over $220,000 to date,” Walters said. “In addition to scholarships, Group Study Exchanges and clean water projects, Polio eradication has been strongly supported by our club.”

“I was in the room when Bill Gates donated $255 million for Polio eradication and he said the reason he did it was that he trusted Rotary to get the job done.  I think people in Georgetown feel the same way.”

Past president and 54-year member Jim Forrester explained why he joined in 1959. “Because it was and it continues to be representative of the crucial people in the community,” he said. “I thought this would be a nice experience to get to know these people while giving me new opportunities,” Forrester said.

Bill Doar, who joined in 1962, said, “I got involved because of the networking and back then leading men in the community were members and it was good to be affiliated with such a group. I’ve stayed involved because it is always doing good community work, and I enjoyed the fellowship.”

Past president and member since 1976 Charles Schooler said, “I joined Rotary to stay involved after Jaycees, because I had to get out of the Jaycees when I turned 35.  I thought Rotary was the next direction to take to stay civically active. Things I saw started are still going on and are being done well in the community.  It makes you proud to be a member of an organization like that.”

The Stewart-Parker House, a federal-style home and one of the oldest homes in South Carolina, was once owned by a successful Georgetown businessman, Daniel Tucker, who was said to have entertained President George Washington, when the first president visited Georgetown on his 1791 southern tour.

The YouTube video on this event can be seen at:  http://youtu.be/ODNfDFRKtC8

The slide show prepared for the Club’s 75th Anniversary can be seen at:  http://youtu.be/xNUpdMHPVKw

Georgetown Lunch Rotary Donates to the Salvation Army Hurricane Relief Efforts

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Aug 092013
 

George Chastain (left), President of the Georgetown Rotary Club, presents a check to Captain Jason Hughes of the Salvation Army to help with hurricane relief efforts.

After Hurricane Sandy devastated the Northeast, the Georgetown Lunch Rotary Club decided to express its support by raising funds for the victims who were helped by the Salvation Army relief efforts.   Through individual donations from its membership, the Georgetown Club raised $1,275 which was recently presented to the Salvation Army of Georgetown.

Submitted by: Nat Kaminski, Georgetown Rotary Club

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