News Flash


Posted on: October 14, 2022

First Responders Memorialized

Wreath Laying

The Onslow County Board of Commissioners honored first responders in a Wreath Laying Ceremony at the Public Safety Memorial in Burton Park. 

A roll call of those who died in service to the community was read and a bell tolled for each of their names. The White Oak High School Chamber Choir sang “Amazing Grace,” the North Carolina Highway Patrol provided a gun salute, and Onslow County Deputy Travis Smith performed “Taps” at the event.

The Memorial includes a sculpture entitled “Reflected in Our Eyes” which is a curved wall of highly polished stainless steel cut with the outlines of a fire and rescue responder, a law enforcement responder and an emergency medical services responder. The voids created by their outline represent those now missing from our community. The mirrored surface allows the viewer to be reflected back; side by side with the with cut-out image of the first responders. 

The Memorial is located at 112 NW Corridor Blvd (at the intersection with Richlands Hwy) and the public is invited to attend the ceremony. Parking is available at the Tar Landing Baptist Church.

Fourteen names are on the sculpture representing those known to have died in service. Their names will be read out in a roll call as part of the honors given during the Thursday event.

  • James Melville Jones - Hoerner Waldorf Corporation
  • Deputy Jerry Van Barber - Onslow County Sheriff's Office
  • Officer Terry L. Lanier  - Jacksonville Police Department
  • Detective William T. Whitehead - Jacksonville Police Department
  • Rayford D. Coston - International Paper Company
  • Chief Henry "Hank" Perry - Pumpkin Center VFD
  • Firefighter Billy H. Williams - Rhodestown VFD
  • Firefighter Brandon "Buddy" Whimple - Rhodestown VFD
  • Assistant Chief Colin Gene Thomas - Verona VFD
  • Deputy Steven C. Boehm - Onslow County Sheriff's Office
  • Captain Jerry L. Scantling - Onslow County Sheriff's Office 
  • Chief Jimmy L. Davis Sr. - White Oak VFD
  • Deputy Steven J. Black - Onslow County Sheriff's Office
  • Assistant Chief Charles Harvey - Piney Green Volunteer Fire Department 

Commissioners at Public Safety Memorial 2022

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