RICHMOND COUNTY– Dan McCready was a freshman in college when he watched with horror as the planes slammed into the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.
As he approached graduation, the country was engaged in two wars. And that is when McCready realized he wanted to be proactive.
“I wanted to do my part,” McCready said in an exclusive interview with the Richmond Observer. “This was the first time I felt a calling to serve our country”.
His plans after graduation initially included using his economics degree and going into business. But instead, the Eagle Scout joined the United States Marine Corps.
“Other than marrying my wife, the biggest honor I’ve had in my life was leading a platoon of 65 Marines in Iraq during the surge of 2007-2008,” McCready said.
While serving in Iraq, McCready’s fellow soldiers helped him find his faith. He was baptized in water from the Euphrates River. McCready was honorably discharged as a Captain.
“Running for office is not something I planned to do,” McCready admitted. “It hit me late last year how divided our country has become, how dysfunctional Washington has become, and what a need we have for new leaders to step up and serve. (The need for) leaders who are in it for the right reasons.
“We have a saying in the Marine Corps,” McCready noted. “Officers eat last after our men and you don’t leave a man behind. Those are things that are desperately missing in Washington.”
When asked about his view on national security McCready noted he believes it’s been a while since anything significant has happened.
“I don’t think we have had a strategy for 15 years,” McCready said. “We don’t have one now and we didn’t have one when I was in Iraq. When we commit troops, we should do it with overwhelming force and with a clear objective. What is the mission, how do we accomplish it and then we should come home when we’re done.”
Since leaving the Marines, McCready has been busy with a business he and a fellow Marine started. McCready has helped build 36 solar farms in rural North Carolina, putting hundreds of people to work.
When asked about his view on economic matters McCready said, “I’m a fiscal conservative and a pro-business democrat. I understand from being a business owner how to make a payroll, how to balance a budget and I believe we need regulatory relief, especially for small business.”
McCready noted he has made several trips to Richmond County, including a recent trip to participate in the Opioid Crisis Roundtable. He expressed his intentions to make regular return trips to get to know the people and the concerns of Richmond County.
In addition to McCready, currently in the race for the 9th Congressional District seat are incumbent Robert Pittenger (R), Dr. Mark Harris (R), Christian Cano (D) and Maria Collins Warren (D).
For more info on Dan McCready’s run for Congress visit his web page www.danmccready.com. Stay tuned to the RO for continued election coverage.