MAKING A DIFFERENCE: Montford Point Marines - - Jackson, MS

MAKING A DIFFERENCE: Montford Point Marines

GREENVILLE, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Walt Grayson is back with another story about friends of ours who are making a difference.

A friend of mine, Ralph Jones in Greenville, gave me a call the other day and told me they are organizing a branch of the Montford Point Marines to make a difference in the Delta. Great! Then I had to ask him what are Montford Point Marines?

"The Montford Point Marines is a veteran's organization," Ralph told me. "It was started because of the Montford Point Marines in North Carolina. They were the first African Americans in the U.S. Marine Corp, and the first ones earning the eagle, globe and anchor signifying they as United States Marines."

Ralph and a couple of other leaders in their new chapter of Montford Point marines, Jim McNear, a Vietnam Veteran among other things, and Terry Gales, Washington County Veterans Service Officer, met with me the other day at the courthouse in Greenville to outline for me exactly what their new veterans organization plans to do - help veterans.

But in talking with the group, I found out that another aspect of this new service organization is to get veterans involved in helping other folks, too.

Ralph says, "Our “Hash-Mark” Johnson Charity Motor Cycle will be an annual event, just like our Daddies and Daughters dance will be an annual event and we're working on a General Frank E. Peterson scholarship gala."

They've already taken part in some Delta parades and in drives to help kids in the Delta.

"It's going to be bringing people together. Showing that we care here in the Delta," says Terry.

"All of us, no regardless of what branch of the armed forces you are a member of you can be a part of the Montford Point Marines as long as you hold an honorable discharge. And if you hold one and your family members want to be a part of it they can join as well," Ralph says.

Ralph tells me that being a registered non-profit agency, at least 25 percent of their membership is open to people who are non military. Male, female, all races, can be a Montford Point Marine. But especially veteran Marines in Greenville and the Delta. Join up, pitch in and help some fellow veterans and make a difference in the Delta.

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