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Military officer recognized for work in community
A local military officer has received a unique distinction from an American bread company.

Army National Guard Lt. Col. Buck Bennett of Glynn County is the winner of the 2012 Wonder Bread Heroes program. The program celebrates ordinary Americans who make extraordinary contributions to their communities.

Bennett was selected from more than 2,000 nominations for the distinction.

"I'm humbled," Bennett said Monday. "The stuff we do (isn't) for recognition. It's for the soldiers, for their families and for their service. We do it for them."

Bennett was nominated by his wife, Joni, who joins him in the work they do locally for veterans, active military personnel and the Fort Stewart soldiers in the Warrior Transition Unit.

As a part of his reward, Bennett received $50,000 in his name to donate toward four United Service Organizations programs: the United Through Reading Military Program, Operation Phone Home, Seasme Street/USO Experience Tour and With You All the Way program.

The USO is dedicated to providing services for military personnel.

"It's just something we do ... It gives me joy and pleasure to give back to everyone in the military," he said. "I have directly benefited from the USO throughout my deployments and I have taken advantage of it, so to be given that choice is great."

Wonder Bread selected Bennett for his "deep dedication to supporting active service men and women, veterans and military families."

The volunteer work he does in his spare time is a part of his role in the community, Bennett said.

"I'm active in a variety of things I do. It's just about being a part of the community and giving back," he said.

Bennett will receive a year's supply of Wonder Bread and $2,500 cash prize.

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