HOLLY RIDGE – Onslow County is home to our nation’s premier special operations military training institution, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, and that means the eastern North Carolina has a high concentration of America’s finest warriors. They take an oath to defend the Constitution, and fight for its principles at the most elite level on behlaf of the American people. Ideally, once a Marine has completed his service, they make a home in eastern North Carolina, contributing their skills to the community and pursuing the American dream they fought so devil-doggedly for.
That’s the pursuit Nick Koumalatsos has led since joining the United States Marine Corps. After 12 years of service, five of those as a special forces Critical Skills Operator in war zones like Afghanistan, Koumalatsos turned his skills, experience, and drive toward business and just kept going. He launched or co-founded businesses like tactical training and outfitting services; a life & workforce transitioning non-profit for veterans entering the private sector; a coffee company; a line of manly beard grooming products; a shipping services company; and, a personal training gym named Snap Fitness in the town of Holly Ridge.
Well, the executive order signed by
Dictator Governor Roy Cooper, in addition to affecting businesses in various ways, mandated the closure of that gym. The police have been harassing workers and members; yet, this Marine Raider remembers swearing an oath to protect and defend the U.S. Constitution, not the whimsical writ of Roy Cooper. His righteous indignation, reinforced with a Semper Fi spirit, is now trained on the officials — from local levels to the halls of D.C. — for allowing such unconstitutional violations transpire.
“It is with a very heavy heart that I inform you that we are temporally closing to the public until further notice. I have very strong convictions about our rights in America and have no problem fighting for them. I served 12 years in our Armed Forces where I took an oath to defend our constitution. What I cannot sit back, and watch is the harassment of our members by the Holly Ridge Police Department. This is simply inexcusable and on their behalf, I apologize for any negative interaction or empty threats you may have received.
Due to unfortunate events Police Chief Keith Whaley has been released of duty and Captain Richards is acting Police Chief of Holly Ridge. Captain Richards has unlawfully trespassed in our gym with an old keycard which was to be returned upon termination of membership prior to 2018. He entered the gym and threatened to ticket all members that were inside. He also took videos and photos from the windows. I want to inform you of this so that you are completely aware of the situation.
I have personally spoken to the Mayor Jeff Wenzel sad he stands by Governor Roy Coopers orders. “Regardless of how many rights it violates.”
Currently ABC Stores, Tobacco Shops, and many other big businesses are allowed to operate under the essential clause however, small businesses are deemed non-essential. This is a clear picture of favoritism to businesses that have high sales tax rate for the state of North Carolina. Due to the way memberships and personal training are taxed it is not a large revenue generation machine for the state. Federal judges ruled last week that Governor Roy Cooper’s orders violated the Constitutional First Amendment Rights for freedom of religion and to worship freely. Churches are meeting all over North Carolina at this time.
Whether you agree with this order or not is not the point. The point is all Americans have the rights afforded to them by our Constitution. If you choose not to exercise those rights are up to all of us on an individual basis but those that choose to do so, can without prejudice from our Government.
We are a keycard access membership only health facility with a Physical Therapy Tech on our team. Many of our members utilize our facility to maintain their physical health and even more importantly their mental health. Physical Fitness is a cornerstone to mental and physical health and that is now more important than it has ever been especially in our small military and veteran community.
These are the actions that I will personally be taking, and I suggest/hope you do the same:
As I said I have contacted the Mayor Jeff Wenzel and he is not willing to assist on any level. He prefers that Holly Ridge Business Owners silently standby as their constitutional rights and freedoms are ripped away and watch their businesses fail as the unconstitutional orders are extended with no end in sight.
We have done everything that the CDC recommends practicing safe and healthy guidelines while dealing with COVID-19. Extra pre-cautionary measures have been taken: sanitization, keeping capacity at a 10 member minimum etc. Their guidelines are simply not enough to allow us to continue to serve you. So, I will be contacting The Town Council in regard to Captain Richard’s actions as well as this unconstitutional executive order. Quarantine and Isolation orders by definition are put in place to protect the healthy from the sick. Never in the history of our nation have we chosen to quarantine the healthy.
Here is their contact info for those of you that would like your 1st Amendment rights to be heard. I strongly suggest you do so.
Town Number: 910-329-7081
Town Manager: Heather Reynolds firstname.lastname@example.org 910-329-7081 ext. 223
Mayor: Jeff Wenzel email@example.com
Councilwoman Rena Bragg: firstname.lastname@example.org
Councilmember Sholar: email@example.com
Councilwoman Pamala Hall: firstname.lastname@example.org
Councilman Gregory Hines: email@example.com
Councilmember Thomas Hedrick: firstname.lastname@example.org
Joint email mailto:BOC@onslowcountync.gov
Commissioner Jack T. Bright Jack_bright@onslowcountync.gov
Commissioner Paul Buchanan Paul_Buchanan@onslowcountync.gov
Commissioner Royce Bennett
Commissioner Timothy Foster
Commissioner Robin Knapp Robin_Knapp@onslowcountync.gov
Commissioner Mark Price Mark_Price@onslowcountync.gov
Commissioner William Shanahan
3rd Congressional District
Congressman Gregory Murphy