Butch Glenn is one of at least 49 veterans in Rock Hill who have been awarded a Purple Heart Medal for wounds sustained in military combat—and now, York County is one of at least nine counties in South Carolina designated as a Purple Heart county.
Glenn presented a plaque to the county on Monday night, shaking hands with council Chairman Britt Blackwell.
“What it’s really doing is just recognizing that York County has purple heart veterans,” said Glenn, 64, commander of the local Rock Hill chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart.
Glenn reached out to members of the county council over the summer to see if the county was interested in being honored as a Purple Heart municipality. Cities, states and counties are eligible for recognition under the national Military Order of the Purple Heart.
Other recognized counties in the state include Spartanburg, Oconee, Anderson, and Lexington.
The Purple Heart is given to individual U.S. military members who are wounded or killed in combat. Glenn received his Purple Heart as a newly drafted army man on Thanksgiving 1969, just a few months after he landed in Vietnam.
“It was what they call a million dollar-wound,” said Glenn, whose left wrist nerve was severed when he and other U.S. soldiers got caught in a booby trap. “If it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t have gotten to come home.”
As a result of the injury, he lost feeling in parts of his left arm.
Glenn said the local chapter of the military order is currently working on bringing a Purple Heart monument to Rock Hill’s Glencairn Gardens, which maintains a Veterans Garden sponsored by the American Legion Post 34 and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2889.
Jie Jenny Zou• 803-329-4062