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This Is Carolina: Retired Marine spends free time cleaning trash along Marion County roads

Published: May. 12, 2022 at 6:42 PM EDT
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MARION COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) - A retired Marine in Marion County is improving his community every day.

He’s made it his mission to keep Marion County beautiful by picking up trash along the side of the road.

Mayhew served in the Marine Corps from 1969 to 1972.

He says that love for the United States instilled in him during his service is exactly why he cleans the roads.

“I’ve got pride in this country,” Steve Mayhew said. “That’s the reason I do this trash thing.”

It’s been part of his daily routine for well over a decade.

But he says he probably shouldn’t have even made it this far in life.

Mayhew had a brain tumor in the early 2000s.

He had to have surgery to remove it.

He lost his hearing in his right ear, and it’s still difficult for him to keep his head vertical.

“Everybody thought I was going to die,” Mayhew said. “As a matter of fact, they told my wife several times, ‘It’ll probably be it for him.’ But I fooled them. She said, ‘If he weren’t so hardheaded being a Marine, he would’ve died!’”

Nearly two decades after his near-death experience, Mayhew is still going strong with no plans of slowing down.

“I feel the same as I did 15 years ago, so I’ll do it as long as I feel like it,” he said.

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