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Clay County veteran continues to serve his community

This week's Stories of Service profiles a Clay County veteran who served in the Army for 24 years and continues to serve his community.

MIDDLEBURG, Fla. — We're proud to share the stories of the brave men and women who serve our country in the military. In this week's Stories of Service we profile a man who continues to serve veterans in Clay County year afters he served in the Army.

"Clay County, to me it means home," said Rich Carey, "I grew up here."

Rich Carey never planned on returning to Clay County after graduating from Orange Park High School in 1980. He enlisted in the Army in 1982 and traveled the globe.

"I enjoyed the Army," said Carey, "I really did, I got to visit 28 countries, I went all over, I got to see a lot of wonderful things and if I had to do it all over again I would definitely do it."

Carey spent 24 years in the Army and saw 3 campaigns in the Persian Gulf War as a Lance Missile Crewmember. He spent more than 2 decades serving our country in the Army, but now his job is to serve the people who served. Carey is the Senior Veteran's Service Officer for Clay County.

"As a Veteran Service Officer I help the veterans and their family members with a lot of different benefits and navigate the VA system with the Department of Veterans Affairs," said Carey.

Carey retired from the Army in 2006. He's no longer involved with multiple rocket systems but instead helps veterans and their families in Clay County get access to the healthcare benefits that they need.

"This was a natural fit coming here," said Carey, "because I used to work at colleges and universities doing programs and it was always great when a veteran came back and said thank you."

And we would like to say thank you to Rich Carey for being ready to serve the more than 25,000 veterans, who like him, call Clay County their home.

More information about the Clay County Veterans Service Office can be found on their website: https://www.claycountygov.com/community/veterans-services 

To make an appointment with Clay County Veteran Services call 904-529-4256 or email veteransservices@claycountygov.com

If you have a Story of Service that you would like us to profile, send us an email to storiesofservice@firstcoastnews.com.

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