AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) — All area Vietnam Veterans were encouraged to come downtown to the VA and get a commemorative pin in honor of their service, as the country commemorated National Vietnam War Veterans Day.

Retired Sergeant Major Timothy McCarthy was one of several veterans of the Vietnam War helping to pass out pins today. Megan Kon, a Public Affairs Specialist with VA Augusta wrote a piece on McCarthy earlier this week ahead of Wednesday’s commemoration.

Drafted four days after his 21st birthday, according to a write-up by VA Augusta staff, McCarthy shipped off to basic training in July 1965. As a Private, he trained at Fort Gordon, in Augusta, Georgia, and specialized in being a multichannel terminal operator and was soon stationed in Chuncheon, South Korea. As his superiors were getting sent to Vietnam, the write-up detailed, he was promoted to sergeant only 16 months later.

McCarthy toured in Vietnam in the Summer of 1967, having been promoted to a Company Operations Sergeant serving in the 1st Infantry Division, 121 Signal Battalion. He retired as a Command Sergeant Major with the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Command in 1993. He has continued to volunteer at VA Augusta and take part in events that honor and benefit other veterans.