Well, … how did you get here? For me, it was the people

3 mins read


Not too long ago, I was sitting with Jeff Evans, one of the two publishers of The Island News. As we sat there chatting one of the questions that came up was the usual one “How’d you get here?” 

Please notice the Southern contraction which has slid into my vernacular. After discussing our own stories, we realized how common this question has become because of all the newcomers.

Occasionally, when I ask the question, I hear “I was born here.” 

But for the most part, I can tell a “not-born-here” resident quickly.

The reasons people give, for the most part, are interesting and, many times, unique. Sometimes it is the person that came here to follow an old girlfriend only to watch the relationship fall apart but find their love of the Beaufort community remained.

For me, I fell in love with this area 15 years ago when we had traveled up and down the east coast looking for a place to retire. Beaufort’s history, small town atmosphere and military presence all seemed so familiar to me. 

We didn’t move here until 2014 but knew we would when we both retired.

There are other great stories. The couple from San Diego, Calif., who wanted to live on the east coast and drew a line from their home across the United States. They went from latitude 32.7 to latitude 32.4. Interesting way to relocate. There are many retired military members who come here after being all over the world, and they decide to retire here. 

Some people come because their parents are here, or their children and they want to be closer.

I have heard multiple friends who have said the climate, the golfing, and the fishing all drew them here.

“But other places have good climate, golfing, and fishing too. How did you decide to choose Beaufort?”

Turns out a lot of people were unanimous in saying they loved the people. There is a good manner attitude here that those of us from the Northeast were happy to experience. It has rubbed off on us, and we are nicer people for it.

This reminded me of a recent grocery store trip when a woman with two teenage daughters stood there and chatted instead of helping the clerk bag all their groceries, which was a lot.

When it was my turn, I shook my head and expressed my shock at the inconsiderateness of the mother and daughters for not helping. The clerk’s response was exactly what I was thinking, “They’re not from around here.” 

We both laughed.

And that is the real answer, Jeff, to “How’d you get here, Lee?”

It was the people.

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