Today a C-17 flew up and down the South Carolina coastline to record video and photos of people waving from the shoreline, waving flags and other red, white and blue items, all to share with troops overseas in a project called Salute From the Shore.
The C-17 Globemaster took of from Myrtle Beach at 2 p.m., and slowly cruised southward to Hilton Head Island, with a crew inside filming people saluting and waving flags from the beaches. People at Pawleys Island paused to wave during a Fourth of July parade.
“Here it comes,” people called to each other just after 2 p.m. as they began to see the plane winking in the sun as it approached.
“When I was in the military, I would have loved to have something like this,” said Chuck Lucas of Garden City Beach, who served in the U.S. Navy. “You know, when you’re far away from home, that support means even more.”
He and his wife, Judy, and their friend Linda Daniel from Panama City, Fla., were just a few of the hundreds of people who lined Grand Strand beaches to take part in the salute organized by a grass-roots group of men from the Columbia area.
The Lucases said they have many relatives who have served and are serving in the military, but it wasn’t just those directly connected who wanted to offer their salutes.
Betty and Joe Brown and their daughter Linda Phillips, of Surfside Beach, don’t have relatives currently serving, but Betty Brown’s brothers both served during World War II.
Despite the crowds, the Browns and Phillips found a spot in the sand and waited so they could be part of the salute.
“I’ve lived here for 22 years and I have never seen it as crowded as it is today,” Phillips said. She attributed the crush of people both to the picture-perfect day and the flyover.
Betty Brown said she wanted to be there “to see the crowds and the plane and just to celebrate.”
For more details on the project, go to www.salutefromtheshore.org.