12/11/11 — SJAFB EOD responds to 9th call

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SJAFB EOD responds to 9th call

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on December 11, 2011 1:50 AM

Wayne County residents have grown accustomed, over the past year, to seeing members of the 4th Fighter Wing Explosive Ordnance Disposal flight respond to scares outside the Seymour Johnson Air Force Base gates.

But for the residents of Kelford, a town that boasts a population of just more than 200, the experience was likely a bit more tense.

For the ninth time since January, locally stationed airmen were mobilized by law enforcement who serve communities that surround the installation.

But this time, the call came from a county other than Wayne.

EOD personnel traveled nearly 100 miles Friday afternoon to an abandoned warehouse in Bertie County.

And while Seymour Johnson officials have yet to disclose just why the team was sent into action, they have said that military expertise was deemed necessary at the site.

Friday's event marks the ninth time Air Force personnel have been called on. The others include:

* Nov. 22 -- Airmen responded just before 10:30 a.m. after a bomb threat was made at the new Cherry Hospital construction site. After searching the grounds for more than three hours, nothing of consequence was found.

* Nov. 14 -- Goldsboro police officers asked airmen to meet them at a firing range off Old Mount Olive Highway in Brogden to inspect an object that was recovered from a local residence earlier that morning.

* Nov. 3 -- A small black briefcase left next to a gas line prompted the evacuation of several stores along Ash Street.

* Oct. 18 -- EOD airmen disposed of a live mortar round discovered by the Wayne County Sheriff's Office Dive Team during a search for stolen guns.

* Sept. 11 -- More than 100 people were evacuated from the Wayne County Courthouse after a device that appeared to be a bomb was found on the property.

* June 22 -- David and Susan Crooks were working to restore an antique sewing machine and discovered what was later identified as a live grenade that dates back to World War I.

* Feb. 11 -- A cellular phone prompted the lockdown of the area immediately surrounding two post office drop boxes located near the intersection of Eastgate and Drives.

* Jan. 3 -- A "pipe bomb" was found by a Department of Corrections cleanup crew along U.S. 70, just two miles west of the Rosewood Walmart near Riverbend Road.