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Maritime Day ceremony held at Riverfront Park

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Today local Merchant Marines took time out to remember their fellow servicemen. They gathered today at Riverfront Park. Local veterans, the Coast Guard Color Guard, Ashley High School's Naval Junior ROTC, and the 440th Army Band Buglers, all took part in the ceremony. It was concluded by laying a wreath on the Cape Fear River in honor of the area's Merchant Marines who have died. During times of war, our merchant ships deliver military supplies overseas to our forces and allies. WWII Merchant Marine, Robert Pollock said, "We sailed on a tanker with a reinforced cargo deck. You could put heavy equipment on the deck. We'd carry eight PT boats over at a time and discharge them in Guatel Canal." The US imports about 85 percent of its strategic commodities critical to America's industry and defense. Nearly all of those materials are transported by merchant vessels.

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Maritime day

We salute seafarers. But for all the taxes boaters pay, especially the new $15 salt water license, boat ramps are unacceptable. Some ramp parking isn't paved. At the foot of castle street, you'll rip your boat and trailer up at anything but high tide. Wrightsville beach..........maybe 20 spaces. All the ramps are a joke. But the $15 fishing fee did do one thing. They pay a man to ask if you caught anything.