The Exchange Club of Charleston has chosen to give its “Book of Golden Deeds” award only 30 times since the first award in 1959, saving the honor for people who truly exemplify “service above self.”
This year the club honored Summerville’s former mayor, Berlin G. Myers, for his lifetime of service to his community.
“He is a man of humility, integrity, kindness, gentleness, goodness,” said Dr. Joe Wren, his former pastor at Summerville Baptist Church, to club members gathered Thursday at the Citadel’s Holliday Alumni Center.
Those qualities made him an exemplary husband, father and friend and were instrumental in his business success, Wren said.
“He’s what I refer to as a ‘hitching-post person,’” someone whose values and lifestyle can be emulated, he said.
The “Book of Golden Deeds” award is given to people who are sincere in their attempts to help the community, have exceptional histories of unselfish giving and have made the community a better place to live.
Summerville High School football coach John McKissick was also on hand to offer congratulations to his longtime friend.
“You couldn’t have a better mayor of a town than Berlin Myers,” he said.
“If I said everything about him that he’s done we’d be here until six o’clock,” he joked.
Myers first ran for Town Council in 1965. He served as mayor for 10 terms, until his retirement in 2011. He is the longest-serving board member of Summerville’s First National Bank, served on the board of Dorchester Hospital, helped with the founding of Charleston Southern University, and has been awarded the Order of the Palmetto and the Order of the Silver Crescent. As a young man he stormed the beaches of Normandy and earned four bronze stars.
Myer’s lumber business celebrated its 73rd anniversary in December, and he celebrates his 96th birthday next month.
Myers thanked the club and said he loves everyone and works his heart out for everybody.