‘I just wanted to serve’: Charlotte Army veteran to be inducted into U.S. Veterans Hall of Fame

Published: Oct. 28, 2021 at 3:20 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 28, 2021 at 3:25 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Sergeant Major Adrian Hamrick, a military veteran and Charlotte native, will be inducted into the U.S. Veterans Hall of Fame this Saturday.

According to the organization’s website, the U.S. Veterans Hall of Fame is “a nonprofit that aims to pay tribute to the men and women of prior military service who exemplify great character and service.”

The nonprofit also works to educate the public on the historical service and sacrifice of the nation’s veterans and gather resources that enhance the lives of veterans.

Ahead of Saturday’s induction ceremony, Hamrick spoke to WBTV about his career in the military.

He said he graduated from Independence High School in 1982 and joined the Army. He said his father, a Korean War veteran, was the man who initially inspired him to become a soldier.

“Listening to him share his stories about his time in the Korean War and with his friends and his experience as a machine gunner and so as long as I can remember, four years old, I just wanted a machine gun,” said Hamrick.

After graduating from high school, Hamrick turned his dreams into a reality. He completed basic training and airborne school in 1983.

“I was a rifleman, I was an automatic rifleman, and a grenadier where you shoot grenades,” Hamrick said.

Hamrick’s career in the Army allowed him to work in a variety of roles.

The list of titles and accomplishments goes on and on.

He spent time leading other troops and instructing soldiers as a drill sergeant. He also takes pride in the fact that he was able to serve at The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington, Virginia.

“I think the noblest cause that a person can have is to risk their lives in the protection of God, country and family,” said Hamrick.

After 26 years with the Army, Hamrick retired and returned home to Charlotte, but his service hasn’t stopped. The veteran said he is now dedicating his time and efforts to helping people in the community.

“I just wanted to serve. I wanted to see the direct impact of my service,” said Hamrick. “There were some kids that needed that example. They needed to see that example that they too can make it from here and so I wanted to go back and not just the kids, but my community say, ‘no you can make it.’”

Hamrick said getting inducted in the U.S. Veterans Hall of Fame isn’t an acknowledgment he needed, but it will be something his children can remember him for.

He said he’s hoping to draw attention to a number of organizations that help military families: Blue Star Mothers, Gold Star Families, Purple Heart Association and Cedars with Anoint and Testimony.

To learn more about the U.S. Veterans Hall of Fame and this Saturday’s induction event, visit the organization’s website here:

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