MOUNT PLEASANT, SC (WCSC) - SCE&G announced a $125,000 donation to Patriots Point Wednesday to fund the preservation of veteran war stories.
The donation enables the Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum to expand its "War Stories" video series and purchase equipment needed to record video archives and oral histories.
"The ability to capture and preserve stories is very important because these men and women, especially those who served in World War II and the Korean War, won't be around forever," Patriots Point Executive Director Mac Burdette said. "We need to ensure that their experiences are saved for future generations to see, hear and respect."
According to the United States Department of Veteran Affairs, by 2017, there will only be 500,000 World War II veterans still living. More than 16 million Americans served in the war.
The museum will archive the stories of veterans as they visit the USS Yorktown, using a recently built studio aboard the ship. The videos will be presented through touch-screen kiosks throughout the museum as well as on social media and in schools.
Keller Kissam, President Retail and Operations, SCE&G, said the company's employees really believe in this initiative, which honors veterans. "They're the greatest generation, and they're not many of them left around anymore," Kissam said.
"Their numbers are shrinking. We felt it was important to take their story personally to young people in our schools and carry it to our young people is our schools," Kissam said. "So that they can look them in the eyes, read their lips and understand their stories of courage and sacrifice and what it took to preserve liberty here in America."