Armory addition named for Guard veteran

August 11, 1997


Staff Writer

Lloyd A. May, a Hagerstown native who contributed more than 42 years to the Maryland Army National Guard, will now have his name on the new 20,000-square foot addition to the Randolph Milholland Armory on Roxbury Road.

About 100 people and 40 guardsmen looked on Sunday as May, his wife, and several distinguished guests, including U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, R-Md., Maryland Sen. Don Munson, R-Washington, and Washington County Commissioner Ron Bowers, helped unveil a 5-foot plaque dedicating the new facility to the retired chief warrant officer.

"(May) is one of the most dedicated soldiers I have ever known in my entire career. When a person dedicates his entire life to an organization, it's time to give back," said Lt. Gen. James F. Fretterd, the adjutant general for the state of Maryland.


After graduating from Hagerstown High School, May joined the Maryland National Guard in May 1948 on somewhat of a fluke, he said. But there was nothing casual about the way he treated his duties.

"He was an outstanding soldier," said wife Betty May, 65. "His men came first, and he was committed to doing well for them in any way possible."

Lloyd May, now 66 and living in Paramount, Md., said he was pleased, gratified and nervous about having the armory addition named after him.

"When I was initially called about it, I didn't believe it," he said.

But when it registered, he said he was grateful that somebody had taken notice of his efforts.

"It's a really great feeling to be recognized before friends and fellow guardsmen," he said during the ceremony before the audience gave him a standing ovation.

Completed July 1, the facility more than doubled the armory's size and contains men's and women's locker rooms, two large classrooms, physical fitness center, battalion headquarters offices, kitchen, maintenance shops and additional storage space, said Lt. Col. Joseph Neder, battalion commander of the 729th Forward Support Battalion.

"It's great for the soldiers. It's their home away from home," he said of the approximately 200 guardsmen enlisted in that battalion.

Video conferencing technology will link classrooms to nearby colleges and hospitals to give soldiers first-hand information without them leaving their headquarters, Fretterd said.

"It will allow us to fulfill our dream of making Hagerstown the hub of distance learning," he said.

On the agenda for about 10 years, the $2.1 million addition finally came to life this year because of funding support from Congress and Maryland General Assembly, Fretterd said.

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