Veterans volunteer at Patriots Point ahead of Vietnam 50th anniversary

      MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War, Patriots Point is hosting several special events. In preparation, veterans are sprucing up the USS Yorktown and USS Laffey.{}

      As usual, veterans will be volunteering at the Yorktown's information desk to talk about the museum and answer questions. One of those volunteers served aboard the Laffey when he was 17 years old.{}

      "We want the ship to look the way it did when we were on board, I mean the painting and all that," said Sonny{}"When we first started working down here, the World War II guys did most of the work and then the Korean War guys and now it's us from the 60s and we're rapidly dropping down, too. Our gas tanks are getting a little empty."

      Walker says they need the next generation of veterans to start coming out to help with their labor of love.{}

      The call for volunteers comes at a perfect time. April is volunteer month and Trident United Way is asking people to donate their time, pointing to the wide array of organizations that need help.{}

      A new study found that only 25 percent of South Carolina residents volunteer at all.{}

      "This community has some of the most innovative non-profits in the nation; from Metanoia, a community development organization on the cutting edge of asset-based development; to Wings for Kids, a pioneer in social-emotional learning; to national leaders in the Food Bank and United Way systems," said Chris Kerrigan, CEO of Trident United Way.

      As the coordinator of volunteer activities in the community, Trident United Way's 2-1-1 Hotline has a comprehensive database of volunteer opportunities with hundreds of area non-profits. In the past decade, this service has helped connect thousands of volunteers with non-profit organizations in need. The hotline can be accessed by dialing 2-1-1 or visiting

      On Friday, Patriots Point will break ground on a Vietnam Naval Support Base at 11:30 a.m.

      For a list of volunteer options, click here.