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Tribute Ship for Lebanon War Hero Retires From Service - abc27 WHTM

Tribute Ship for Lebanon War Hero Retires From Service

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  • Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Friday, August 22 2014 8:59 AM EDT2014-08-22 12:59:44 GMT
    For many of her 87 years, Anna Jean Bennett Ditty was told, "You ought to write a book!" So, ten years ago, she did. In fact, she needed three books to cover her life, starting with "The House on the Hill," about growing up with three siblings in a small West Virginia town during the depression, with a hard-working mom and an absentee father.Browsing through her first book, Ditty paused to point out a childhood picture of her baby brother Dickie."He's my baby brother," she said. "My momma alw...More >>
    For many of her 87 years, Anna Jean Bennett Ditty was told, "You ought to write a book!" So, ten years ago, she did. In fact, she needed three books to cover her life, starting with "The House on the Hill," about growing up with three siblings in a small West Virginia town during the depression, with a hard-working mom and an absentee father.Browsing through her first book, Ditty paused to point out a childhood picture of her baby brother Dickie."He's my baby brother," she said. "My momma alw...More >>
  • Perry County Church Given New Life

    Perry County Church Given New Life

    Perry County Church Given New Life

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 11:02 AM EDT2014-08-19 15:02:59 GMT
    A big reason why Darlene Barrick fought to save the Mahanoy Union Church from bulldozers lies in the small cemetery next to it."This is Ulysses Grant Baker. My grandfather Baker," said Barrick, pointing to one of several headstones in the church cemetery with direct family ties. "He helped build the church."At another stone she added, "This is my Uncle Albert who fought in World War One."Since closing in the early 1960's, the church suffered heavily from neglect and vandalism. But stepping in...More >>
    A big reason why Darlene Barrick fought to save the Mahanoy Union Church from bulldozers lies in the small cemetery next to it."This is Ulysses Grant Baker. My grandfather Baker," said Barrick, pointing to one of several headstones in the church cemetery with direct family ties. "He helped build the church."At another stone she added, "This is my Uncle Albert who fought in World War One."Since closing in the early 1960's, the church suffered heavily from neglect and vandalism. But stepping in...More >>
  • Chancel Makeover Marks Dillsburg Church Centennial

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    Friday, August 15 2014 9:17 AM EDT2014-08-15 13:17:26 GMT
    St. Paul's Lutheran Church is an easily recognized landmark of downtown Dillsburg, standing high on a hill, with large stain glass windows and an adjacent prayer garden.But it's inside the church where a remodeling project marks the celebration of the building's 100th anniversary.The most noticeable change is the altar area, now several feet wider, and easier to access.Pastor Lois Van Orden says the centennial seemed like the perfect time to modernize the chancel and choir area."The thing tha...More >>
    St. Paul's Lutheran Church is an easily recognized landmark of downtown Dillsburg, standing high on a hill, with large stain glass windows and an adjacent prayer garden.But it's inside the church where a remodeling project marks the celebration of the building's 100th anniversary.The most noticeable change is the altar area, now several feet wider, and easier to access.Pastor Lois Van Orden says the centennial seemed like the perfect time to modernize the chancel and choir area."The thing tha...More >>

For the USS Rentz, it's the conclusion of three decades of keeping global enemies at bay...and illegal drugs off the streets of America.

"The tempo down here is non-stop. And, right now, we are the only U.S. Naval vessel in the entire theater," said CDR Lance Lantier, Commanding Officer of the guided missile frigate. "Our kind of battle cry has been: 'We are Fourth Fleet!' "

It's been a proud and valiant service that would make the Rentz namesake proud. The ship was named in honor of Lebanon native, George Rentz, who, as chaplain on board the USS Houston in 1942, surrendered his life jacket to another sailor as the ship went down in battle. A selfless act of heroism that earned him the Navy Cross, the only World War Two chaplain so honored.

The ship's Executive Officer, CDR Martin Robertson, says Chaplain Rentz would be proud of the ship's many successful missions.

"It's a real honor to be the Rentz's final XO," he said. "The ship has had an almost 30 year history. It's been distinguished. And the sailors that are on board with us, deployed right now, are doing Rentz's legacy proud and honoring the name of Chaplain Rentz."

In just her final year of service, the Rentz teamed up with anti-submarine helicopters and the U.S.. Coast Guard to intercept millions of dollars worth of illegal narcotics along coastal waters of Central and South America. An exhausting, round the clock effort requiring all hands on deck, working as a team.

"The camaraderie among the crew is outstanding," noted CTCM Jasen Williams, Command Master Chief. "And when we have a mission task, we make sure we give it 100% and make sure we get the mission done."

The Rentz will retire her colors for good in San Diego at the end of May. But, until that time, in the spirit of Chaplain Rentz, the order of the day remains "duty first."

"On our final deployment, we haven't stopped," noted CDR Lantier with pride. "We never say die. We don't say quit."

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