Looking back: 45 years ago, local officer awarded 2 war medals

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Forty-five years ago in 1971, Vietnam was once again in the news.

Chief Warrant Officer Jerry W. Cruit was awarded two Distinguished Flying Cross medals for heroism in Vietnam. He won each one for flying in enemy territory to rescue stranded soldiers. He already had won several other awards for his bravery in action. He was a 1966 graduate of Escambia County High School.

You know, in a bad situation, some people just step up to the plate and perform acts of heroism over and over again. They probably don’t even realize at the time what a brave thing they are doing. We are all lucky to have those who step up when they are needed. Bravo, to this young man and to all the unsung heroes out there.

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The Escambia County Commission financed a float representing the county in the inaugural parade to be held in Montgomery for Governor George C. Wallace on January 18. Also helping to get the float ready were the cities of Atmore, Brewton, Flomaton and East Brewton. The theme of the float was focused on the oil industry and it cost $1,000 to put the float together.

I don’t think I ever remember us having a float in any inaugural parade. Now I could be wrong. As my husband used to say, “I think I have been one or two times.”

Some residents in the neighborhood of Ralph Gibbs in Atmore were very surprised to see a strange animal come running through the area. It turns out that Gibbs planned on raising Llamas and this one got away.

People must have been wondering what it was. It is not the usual animal running loose.

Judy Fay Steege, was honored as being the first baby born in 1971 at Greenlawn Hospital. She was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Billy Gene Steege.

Piggly Wiggly had fryers on sale for 29 cents a pound, bacon for 98 cents a pound, and lettuce for 19 cents a head. They also were selling discount dishes. The A&P had rib-eye steaks for $1.99 a pound.

These were pretty good prices at the time and would be even better if we could find them today.

Reid’s Rexall Drug Store was burglarized when the robber (or robbers) gained access to the store through the floor of the second story. The burglar got away with narcotics and cash.

If these crooks would spend time on working for a living instead of trying to get something for nothing, they could probably have a very good life. But, on the other hand, a lot of them don’t seem to do a lot of thinking.