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Letter: Salisbury lost a good one

Last month Salisbury lost another of America’s Greatest Generation with the passing of William Rankin, age 91. It is possible that he would have never made it to Salisbury if President Truman had not directed that the atomic bomb be used on Japan, forcing their surrender. Bill was a member of an invasion force assembled on Okinawa. Had that invasion occurred, countless American and Japanese lives would have been lost.

After his military service, Bill attended college and became an educator. Bill and his wife Betty have lived in Salisbury for more than a half century, during which they both were teachers in the city and county schools. Bill was involved in many civic endeavors, one of which was creating the winning design for the coin commemorating North Carolina’s bicentennial celebration.

I am writing this letter because Bill was the brother-in-law who became the brother I never had. We shared many common interests such as sports and aviation. Bill was extremely proud of the family he has left behind, especially two grandchildren and soon-to-be four great-grandchildren. His legacy remains in Salisbury.

— Bill L. Pack

Ashland, Kentucky

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