SC man who helped in Thai soccer team rescue has a proud former - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

SC man who helped in Thai soccer team rescue has a proud former teacher back home

U.S. Air Force Maj. Charles Hodges (L) appeared on 'Today' on NBC about the rescue in Thailand. (Source: NBC) U.S. Air Force Maj. Charles Hodges (L) appeared on 'Today' on NBC about the rescue in Thailand. (Source: NBC)
The genteel teacher, Ellen Nicholson, has taught at the private school in Winnsboro since 1974 and has taught many students but still has fond memories of a young man who graduated in the mid-'90s: Charlie Hodges. (Source: WIS) The genteel teacher, Ellen Nicholson, has taught at the private school in Winnsboro since 1974 and has taught many students but still has fond memories of a young man who graduated in the mid-'90s: Charlie Hodges. (Source: WIS)
FAIRFIELD COUNTY, SC (WIS) -

“He just always excelled. He’s still doing it. And I’m thankful.”

That’s what a teacher at the Richard Winn Academy said this morning about one of her former students. The genteel teacher, Ellen Nicholson, has taught at the private school in Winnsboro since 1974 and has taught many students but still has fond memories of a young man who graduated in the mid-'90s:  Charlie Hodges.

According to NBC News, Air Force Maj. Charles Hodges was one of two American servicemen who helped rescue 12 teenagers and their soccer coach from a flooded cave in Thailand. The boys spent at least two weeks in the damp, dark cave as the world watched anxiously as rescuers like Hodges pulled off a rescue mission that had no guaranteed success.

“We knew if we didn’t act when we acted, there was not going to be a successful rescue,” Maj. Hodges told NBC’s "Today" Wednesday morning.

Hodges, who’s now commander of the U.S. Air Force’s 320th Special Tactics Squadron in Okinawa, Japan, is a product of Fairfield County. After graduating Richard Winn, he graduated from the Citadel in 2000. He still has family in Fairfield. They, too, are proud of Hodges’ recent heroics.

As for Nicholson, she’s not surprised at all.

“He would be the very type of person involved in something like that – some type of rescue,” she said. “We want responsible, good citizens, and he fits that mold.”

Wednesday morning, as she flipped through a yearbook from 1996 she flipped through accolades and superlatives Hodges received during his senior year. Some of them seem too prescient:  Most Likely to Succeed, Most Intellectual, Best All Around, and a major athletics award for character.

Then, she flipped to his senior picture and read the goals he listed underneath his smiling portrait:  travel the world and impact society.

“I suppose he’s reached those goals,” Nicholson said with an endearing smile.

Copyright 2018 WIS. All rights reserved. 

  • Local NewsLocalMore>>

  • Woman shot early Sunday morning outside Pawleys Island bar

    Woman shot early Sunday morning outside Pawleys Island bar

    Sunday, July 22 2018 10:17 AM EDT2018-07-22 14:17:09 GMT
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)
    PAWLEYS ISLAND, SC (WMBF) - A woman is recovering Sunday after a shooting in the parking lot of a Pawleys Island restaurant sent her to the hospital. According to Georgetown Sheriff's Office spokesperson Jason Lesley, the woman was shot outside of the SandBar on Ocean Hwy before fleeing to a nearby convenience store. Medical personnel picked up the woman at the Circle K according to Lesley.  There is no update on the woman's condition at this time. GCSO are...More >>
    PAWLEYS ISLAND, SC (WMBF) - A woman is recovering Sunday after a shooting in the parking lot of a Pawleys Island restaurant sent her to the hospital. According to Georgetown Sheriff's Office spokesperson Jason Lesley, the woman was shot outside of the SandBar on Ocean Hwy before fleeing to a nearby convenience store. Medical personnel picked up the woman at the Circle K according to Lesley.  There is no update on the woman's condition at this time. GCSO are...More >>
  • Suspect arrested in murder of 85-year-old Lumberton man

    Suspect arrested in murder of 85-year-old Lumberton man

    Saturday, July 21 2018 7:42 PM EDT2018-07-21 23:42:17 GMT
    Source: Robeson County Sheriff's OfficeSource: Robeson County Sheriff's Office

    LUMBERTON, NC (WMBF) - A suspect is behind bars Saturday, charged with murder in connection to the death of 85-year-old Rufus Revels of Lumberton County. William James Moore, 44, has been charged with first degree murder and robbery. Revels was found dead in his home earlier this month after Lumberton Police responded to a 9-1-1 call.  According to police Revels was beaten to death.  RELATED STORY:  'I'm stunned, hurt, upset:' 85-year-old Lumberton ...

    More >>

    LUMBERTON, NC (WMBF) - A suspect is behind bars Saturday, charged with murder in connection to the death of 85-year-old Rufus Revels of Lumberton County. William James Moore, 44, has been charged with first degree murder and robbery. Revels was found dead in his home earlier this month after Lumberton Police responded to a 9-1-1 call.  According to police Revels was beaten to death.  RELATED STORY:  'I'm stunned, hurt, upset:' 85-year-old Lumberton ...

    More >>
  • City of Florence recognized for economic development progress

    City of Florence recognized for economic development progress

    Saturday, July 21 2018 12:49 PM EDT2018-07-21 16:49:54 GMT
    Source: City of FlorenceSource: City of Florence
    Source: City of FlorenceSource: City of Florence
    FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - The City of Florence recieved state-wide recognition Saturday at an annual meeting between local South Carolina governments and officials.  In addition to the annual awards reception, the Municipal Association of South Carolina (MASC) provides a forum for sharing public service ideas throughout the state. The 2018 Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Award for Economic Development is the City of Florence's sixth straight MASC award.  "I'm happy to work with a ci...More >>
    FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - The City of Florence recieved state-wide recognition Saturday at an annual meeting between local South Carolina governments and officials.  In addition to the annual awards reception, the Municipal Association of South Carolina (MASC) provides a forum for sharing public service ideas throughout the state. The 2018 Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Award for Economic Development is the City of Florence's sixth straight MASC award.  "I'm happy to work with a ci...More >>
Powered by Frankly