Dear Friends and Clients,
 
      I am being put on active duty orders due to the incoming Hurricane Florence that I am sure many of you are aware.  In my current military position as the senior Federal (Title) Army officer for Defense Support to Civilian Authorities for the State of South Carolina, I am responsible for coordinating Federal Defense Department support to help the state in emergencies like this Hurricane.  I will be on orders for this coming week, and the Hurricane is projected to hit the east coast sometime around Thursday night or Friday morning.  Having now been activated for the fourth year in a row for Hurricane emergencies, I have learned that we won't know the specific location for landfall, but it appears headed to the Carolina coast right now.
 
     If you live along the coastline in South Carolina, now is the time to start preparing.  Put your loose porch furniture in the house over the coming days.  Try to stock up on non-perishable food items and water.  If you don't have a generator, I would suggest purchasing one.  Have a plan for evacuation, in the event the Governor orders a coastal evacuation.  Ensure all family members have the plan for how you will link up and move inland from the coast.  If you have friends or family outside the coastal areas, I would recommend coordinating now.  Hotels throughout SC will quickly fill up in the event of a coastal evacuation (which is a high probability).  If you do not evacuate for whatever reason, know the location of emergency shelters and do not take unnecessary risks.
 
      Throughout this next week, stay closely attuned to the news about the storm, as the tracking of the direction of the "eye" of the storm will change as it moves closer.  The best case scenario is that it goes north and out to the north Atlantic to dissipate.  That is unlikely.  It is a bit more likely it will move farther north from SC into North Carolina or Virginia.  Even in that event South Carolina, and particularly Myrtle Beach will be substantially affected.  The likely path now is to hit Myrtle Beach or slightly north. In that event, most of the coast of SC will be affected.
 
     The Law Office will remain open until and if the storm is about to make landfall. At that point, my staff will have to look to their families.  I expect to be back in the office next Monday (though probably a bit tired!).  Courts will likely close at the end of the week and continue cases.  My staff can help answer questions during this time and we will take care of your case.
 
      Some have asked why I continue to put myself at risk of being called to active duty to assist with Hurricanes or other such emergencies.  The simple answer is that this is my way of giving back to the state and nation and community.  I have been trained as an Army officer for almost three decades up to the rank of Colonel, and I want to use that training and skills for the greater good.  Being part of my firm, even as a client, means you are part of it.  Your patience with me during this time helps add up to saving lives.  Thank you for your patience.