Category Community Involvement

SeamonWhiteside & Green Heart Project Complete First of Three Urban Gardens

SIES Garden Build

SeamonWhiteside and Green Heart Project are excited to announce the completion of their first urban garden together at Sullivan’s Island Elementary. Since announcing their partnership earlier this year, SeamonWhiteside, and local nonprofit, Green Heart, have solidified plans to design and construct urban gardens at three local area schools. On September 21st, the first of those gardens will be opened for children attending Sullivan’s Island Elementary to enjoy.

“We can’t be more thrilled with how this project turned out, and look forward to seeing it in action with the students of Sullivan’s Island Elementary ” said Drew Harrison, the Executive Director of Green Heart Project. “The partnerships with Sullivan’s Island Elementary School, Charleston County School District and SeamonWhiteside have made our mission of connecting students to healthy food through school gardens possible. It truly was a community effort, and we are ready to get started on our next project.”

Green Heart will begin installation on the newest garden beds at Meeting Street Elementary @Brentwood on September 19th. SeamonWhiteside has assisted through the entire garden design process including an architectural consultation, charette, construction drawings and budgeting.

“Our team is looking forward to working side-by-side with Green Heart to break ground on the second urban garden,” said Russ Seamon, the Director of Projects at SeamonWhiteside. “This partnership gives us the opportunity to give back to our community by doing what we love – building meaningful spaces for people.”

Through the hands-on learning experience of growing an urban garden, the farm-to-school programs put on by Green Heart teach students the value of healthy, local food while reiterating classroom curriculum, teamwork, respect and entrepreneurship. The school gardens are maintained through class sessions and weekly volunteer hours. From seed to harvest, students participate in every aspect of the agricultural project.

Green Heart envisions sustainable gardens flourishing across Charleston County, and there are plans for a third garden to be constructed before the end of the 2015-2016 school year.

Community members are invited to the ribbon cutting of the Sullivan’s Island Elementary garden, 2015 Mike Perkis Place, Sullivan’s Island, SC 29482, on September 18th at 2:45pm. The unveiling of the plan for Meeting Street Elementary’s urban garden will take place on September 22nd at 3:30pm at 2685 Leeds Avenue, North Charleston, SC 29405.

To see more photos from the Sullivan’s Island Elementary School build, click here.

About Green Heart Project: Founded in 2009, the Green Heart Project is a 501©3 non-profit organization that builds urban gardens and farm-to-school programs in the Charleston Area. With a high value placed on health, education and community, the Green Heart Project pairs local volunteers with students to maintain school gardens while teaching academic standards and interpersonal skills. By doing so it looks to educate students and volunteers about healthy, local foods while fostering lasting relationships and building community. For more information on how to get involved, please visit our website at Follow us on Instagram and Twitter (@GreenHeartCHS)!


The Proof is in the Video: SW+ Palmetto 200


This April, twelve of Seamon Whiteside’s finest took on the challenge of running 200 miles in the Palmetto 200 as a fund raiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Backed by friends, neighbors, co-workers, and clients, this dirty dozen led by Team Captain Landon Messal, not only met their goal of raising $3000 but surpassed it. The final total came to $5,895.14.

This video is an accounting of the fun and camaraderie that the group enjoyed throughout the 30 hours 32 minutes of their race. We hope you enjoy it as much as we have.

Landon Messal, Jennifer Germuth, Daniel Cruz, Preston Busbee, William O’Neal, Lia Tomczak, Frances Timmons, Cody Whiteside, Stuart Whiteside, Joe Bryant, Lee Gastley, and Taylor Critcher

#SeamonWhiteside #Palmetto200

Respect * Responsibility * Recognition


A unique opportunity to pay our respects to our country’s WWII and Korean War veterans presented itself this week. Clint Rigsby, a Senior Landscape Architect in our Greenville, SC office, shared a news video of an Upstate South Carolina Honor Flight that carried his grandfather, James “Jimmy” Williams, Jr., USN and other WWII and Korean War vets to Washington D.C. to visit the memorials established in their honor. These vets have never had the opportunity to see these important monuments dedicated to their sacrifice‑an oversight that is being addressed by the Honor Flight Network.


Established in 2005, the Honor Flight Network works to make sure that each of our nation’s veterans, who want to participate, can. Between 1941 and 1945, approximately 16 million Americans served in the military. Today there are approximately 1 million surviving WWII veterans with an estimated daily loss of 550. The Korean War saw 5,720,000 men and women in uniform but today just over 2 million survive. In recognition of the decreasing number these veterans, the HFN assigned Priority 1 status to the men and women who served in WWII, with its second priority Korean War and then Vietnam War vets.  Terminally ill veterans of any war who have not visited the monuments in our nation’s capital are assigned a Priority 1 designation. It is the organization’s intent to continue to add veterans from other wars in chronological order—Korean War, Vietnam War, Persian Gulf War, Iraq and Afghanistan Wars respectively.

Funded completely by donation, the non-profit group coordinates hundreds of flights from all over the county. Based on the statistics of surviving vets, it is important to note that the organization is working hard to provide trips for all who want them. In fact, in September 2014 alone, 48 Honor Flights are scheduled.


Hearing Clint’s granddad’s story, SW+ was inspired to compile a list of our colleague’s relatives who gave of themselves during World War II and the Korean War, hoping to share this post with our families. The list of family members who interrupted their lives, left their homes and jobs in order to serve this country in a time of great need is impressive indeed. Individual stories include a founding member of the Women’s Airforce Service Pilot program, a member of the crew of the ‘Big E’, the USS Enterprise CV-6 who was there for the Battle of Midway and Leyte Gulf, a soldier who participated in D-Day and a cartographer attached to Admiral Nimitz command in August 1945.

We also have discovered another grandfather who has enjoyed his own Honor Flight; this one out of Ohio in 2012. When we receive a copy of that video, we will update this post to include it.

Several of our military relatives were called back to duty for the Korean War, 1950-1953. Others who saw their fathers and grandfathers go off to war just a few years earlier, enlisted for their own service. Our SW+ family’s Korean War vets include an war experienced sailor, an Army medic, US Army Airborne paratroopers, a flight mechanic and a couple of combat pilots. Backing those combat troops, there are many whose service was in crucial support activities.

Each serviceman and woman has a special story about their wartime experiences and each deserves special recognition for their actions. This article is just one of the many ways we have to offer our thanks and eternal respect to those who fought for our way of life and the security of our nation. Please join us in celebrating the lives and sacrifices of our vets, living and passed.



Role Call

World War II

Richard Lichty Thompson, USN, USS Enterprise CV-6 (Midway, Letye Gulf), Pacific Theater
Avon Earl Thompson, USN, USS Barnes ACV-20, Pacific Theater
Ralph Bridges, US Army, European Theater
William Alfred Merritt, US Navy Seabee, Pacific Theater
William T. Eubanks, USMC, Corporal
James Williams, Jr, USN
Heber Blaine “Bud’ Blankhead, US Army Air Corp, Lt. Col., Pilot, 99th Bombardment Group, North Africa
Rudolph Vernon Yates, USN, Gunners Mate 2c, USS Trever DD 339, Pacific Theater
Leroy Blackwell, US Merchant Marines, 1st Mate, Oil Tanker, Pacific Theater
Grady L. Patterson Jr., US Army Air Corps, Fighter Pilot (P51-Mustang), Flew Sorties from Iwo Jima to Japan
James T. O’Neal, Jr., US Army, Participated in D-Day, European Theater
William Grice Gresham, Jr., US Army Artillery, Europe Theater
Thane Lechlitner, USN, 3rd Class, Flight Mechanic, Shanghi, China, Pacific Theater
John R. Timmons, Flight Surgeon, Amazon, Pacific Theater
Alice Lovejoy, WASP, Ferry Pilot, KIA 1944, Brownsville, TX
David Peterson, USN, Cartographer, Admiral Nimitz Staff, PACNAV Guam
Nels Stjern, US Merchant Marines, 2nd Asst Engineer, North Sea, Europe Theater
Claude David Hiott, Sr., USN, Chief, USS Vincennes CA-44 (Survivor); USS Iowa (Okinawa, Tokyo Bay)
Wendell Edward Ackerman, US Army, Sgt. Paratroop, European Theater
Joseph M. Bryant, USN
Clifford F. Messal, USN, Seabee, CM1c, NOB Argentia,1942; Navy Base Roger, 1943
Dr George Washington Brunson, Army Air Corps, Major, Flight Surgeon, Pacific Theater
Dermot Doyle, US Army Air Corp, S1c, USS Albermarle AV-5, North Africa
Ernest W. Hautala, US Army, Medic
Theodore Moss III, USN
Thomas James Dugan, USN
Frederick John Martschink, Jr. (Fred),  US Army, SSgt, 66th Infantry “Panther” Division, Survivor of sinking of the SS Léopoldville by Uboat, 12/24/1944, European Theater

Korean War

John M. Gastley, US Army, Alaska
Francis J. Langan, US Army Medic, Korea, US Army, Medic, Korea
Merrell Gene Howell, US Army Airborne, Korea
Robert Chester Thompson, USAF, Airman, Hamilton Air Force Base, San Pablo Bay
John H. Guess, US Army, 2LT, 24th Infantry Division, 19th Infantry Regt., Korea
Grady Leslie Patterson Jr, SC Air National Guard, Lt Gen, Fighter Pilot, Korea
Thane Lechlitner, USN, Flight Mechanic, Transport Squadron (R4D planes), Hawaii
Claude David Hiott, Sr., USN
Wendell Edward Ackerman, US Army, Paratroop, , Korea
Rick Campeau, USAF, SSGT, Control Tower Chief, Shaw Air Force Base
John Foster Ruth, USAF, 1st Lt., Biggs Air Force Base, El Paso
Jack Hautala, USMC, Cpl, Military Police – MOS 5831, Korea