The Brunswick Town Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution held their Wednesday, November 14, 2012 meeting at the Trinity United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall on 209 East Nash Street, Southport, NC at 10:00. Dr. Clarence Willie, Lt. Col., USMC, retired, and resident of Winding River, was the guest speaker. His subject was the Montford Point Marines. These marines were African Americans who enlisted and served in WWII. They were segregated and trained at different facilities than white troops.
A veteran of twenty-two years of service in the United States Marine Corp, Lieutenant Colonel Clarence E. Willie retired on July 1, 1991. After retiring from the military, Dr. Willie returned to the profession of education and retired once again in 2007 after having served as a classroom teacher, assistant principal, principal, and assistant superintendent in North Carolina, and district superintendent in South Carolina.
During his retirement, he served as interviewer and consultant for a documentary production entitled "The Marines of Montford Point: Fighting for Freedom," which was produced by the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. It chronicles the experiences of the first African American to serve as United States Marines. The documentary was narrated by academy award winning actor, Louis Gossett, Jr., and has aired nationally on the Public Broadcasting System.
In 2012 Dr. Willie completed work on his book entitled: "AFRICAN AMERICAN VOICES FROM IWO JIMA: PERSONAL ACOUNTS OF THE BATTLE." It chronicles the memories and accounts of eleven veterans who were among nearly 1,000 African Americans who participated in the Iwo Jima campaign.
Dr. Willie's new book is available through amazon.com.