World War II Vet Pays Respects to Soldier Who “Gave it All”
Spc Geoffrey A. Whitsitt, United States Army, Age 21 of Taylors, S.C., was Killed in Action when his vehicle was damaged by an improvised explosive device near Combat Outpost McClain in central Afghanistan’s Logar Province south of Kabul, on January 13, 2010.
He was assigned to the 118th Military Police Company (Airborne), 503rd Military Police Battalion (Airborne), 16th Military Police Brigade (Airborne) with home base at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina.
Specialist Whitsitt was the son of Steve and Debby Whitsitt of Travelers Rest. Geoff was home schooled through the 9th grade and graduated from Greenville Technical Charter High School in 2007. He was a cross-country runner, delivered Meals on Wheels, participated in Greenville Singing Christmas Tree and was a member of the Furman University Children’s chorus.
Surviving in addition to his parents are a brother, Mineman 2nd Class Petty Officer Steven S. Whitsitt, Jr., and a paternal grandmother, Beatrice Whitsitt.
It was a cold rainy day when Spc Whitsitt arrived in Greenville by air with a military escort. His family and a crowd of friends gathered at the airport and accompanied the procession along rain drenched streets to the mortuary in Greer with men, women and children along the way waving American flags to honor a fallen hero who had given his life for his country serving with fellow soldiers in the Army he loved.
Included in the gathering at the airport and the procession as it moved along with motorcycle escorts to Greer, was Roy Gullick, a patriotic veteran of World War II who goes to the office and works every weekday, who is approaching his 90th birthday, and rarely misses an opportunity to honor a fellow veteran, especially one who has made the ultimate sacrifice for his fellow countrymen.
Gullick, a Boy Scout leader all of his adult life except during the time spent in military service, is never seen without a suit and tie unless he is dressed in his scout leader uniform. For patriotic events such as the homecoming of Spc Whitsitt he dons his American Legion Cap.
Roy Gullick attended the memorial service for the young soldier he never met but respected because of his dedicated service and exemplary life. He made photographs at the airport, along the streets and at the location of the memorial service. The photographs, newspaper clippings and brochures were carefully and neatly placed in a hardback binder to honor the memory of Geoffrey A. Whitsitt, a fellow soldier of another generation who did his duty, honored his parents and friends, worshiped his God and added his name to the honored list of those who have sacrificed to preserve the God-given freedom and opportunities Americans have enjoyed for generations.