George Hite, Jr. has a remarkable story about commitment, answering to a higher calling, sacrifice, and everlasting love. Although unable to express himself due to dementia, George’s wife, Christine, is his spokesperson. She is highly articulate and uplifting. Shared by Christine, enclosed are highlights of their story:
George Hite, Jr. entered the US Army in 1981 with hopes of becoming a Chaplain. The Army had other plans. It wasn’t until 1983 when he was released from Fort Ord, CA, that he attended seminary to prepare for his chosen calling. After seminary graduation, George was commissioned back into US Army, this time as First Lieutenant, stationed at Fort Leonard Wood, MO. Because of his previous enlistment, he felt that he understood the soldiers’ plight and sought to improve their lives, one soldier at a time.
After ministering to service personnel and civilians in a chapel outside of the base in MO, George was moved to Germany where he bolstered soldiers working in the field. He was part of the 3rd Support Battalion, where met troops in the field to prepare for whatever conflict was on the horizon. During those years, it was Desert Storm.
Christine joined him later in Germany, but rarely saw him as he traveled with troops counseling, ministering, providing moral support as needed. As an officer’s wife, Christine knew her role well. She enjoyed being around other military wives, where she could be herself while also being entrusted with their stories. Over the years, Christine and George worked together very closely, regardless if they were together or he was in the field. Their strong marriage and devotion to each other withstood the test of time, circumstance, and distance.
George was a natural fit working with soldiers. They trusted and confided in him, valued his services, and felt prepared to deal with whatever came their way because of his words and preparation. He laid groundwork for what to expect and he was instrumental in helping many soldiers through field training.
When his symptoms worsened, Christine, now the military base librarian, knew something was very wrong. He was released from active duty and he retired as a Captain in 1992. George was devastated by the release, as he knew that he could do much more for the troops. With that same “can do” perseverance, he worked with the VA for many years helping others while dealing with his own PTSD. He spoke to no one about his internal demons, including his beloved wife, Christine. During his career, George’s church services were always full, as he was loved by so many and adored by his wife, three grown daughters, and his son.
It is an honor to include you in our Purple Heart Homes family, George and Christine!