Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Social into that MastheadOverlay zone

Langston new VA officer

By Staff, 04/8/19 11:06 AM

PRESCOTT – Herb Langston is Nevada County’s new Veteran’s Affairs representative.

He assumed the position on March 25, with a formal announcement to be made on May 2 at a community coffee the Nevada County Courthouse will be hosting from 9:30-11 a.m. in the courthouse lobby.

Langston spent 22 years in the U.S. Navy, primarily as a hospital administrator. He said he excelled in the administrative field, an area most people prefer to avoid, and, at one time, worked with the Surgeon General for the FSG. His job was to go to different duty stations and evaluate the readiness of their medical facilities, make recommendations on how to improve them and implement the recommendations.

Though a Navy veteran, Langston wasn’t aboard ship long. He spent 13 months on a ship and decided that wasn’t the life for him. The change he made took him to Saudi Arabia, where he was involved in the Gulf War in 1990 and to Norway in 1994, where he evaluated their medical evacuation system to see if it would work for the USN. When he went to Saudi Arabia, he did so with the US Marine Corps and is Fleet Marine Force certified.

However, he was born in Prescott, returning to help his aging parents. Langston retired from the Navy when he was 45, not caring for the direction the Navy was heading in at the time. His time in Saudi helped him realize his own mortality and when he retired, he purchased a red Corvette and drove through the continental US.

For a while he worked at the Pentagon, but didn’t like it, moved from Washington, D.C. to Washington state, where he settled in a small town and earned a degree in design in three years, also while working for a designer. He managed a design show room and did an internship with Pantone in New York City.

While he was doing this, his parents were getting older. “They invested in me when I was young,” he said, “and I was a dividend for them as they aged. I came back to Arkansas to care for them.” His return to Arkansas saw him teach for a while at Robinson Jr. High in Little Rock, work for the United States Postal Service for a while and work in the State House of Representatives for three terms. For a while, he worked in Little Rock during the week and came to Prescott to care for his parents on the weekend.

This changed in Oct. 2010 when he returned to Prescott permanently. His mother died in Jan. 2011 and he stayed, helping his father, who died in 2017. “I made their lives as comfortable as I could,” he said. “I’m glad I moved back. I’ve gotten to know a lot of people in the community and reestablish bonds with my family.”

For Langston, life is about helping others. He volunteered at the Nevada County Library and a local nursing home. He also helps Shelbi Booker, 4-H coordinator with the Extension Service, with her presentations at schools.

As to how he wound up the VA officer for Nevada County, Langston said he was at the library one Saturday with Mark Reed and Michael Graves, who said he’d be good for the position. Initially, he turned it down, but talked with his sister and others, who encouraged him to apply for the job. After much thought and prayer, he applied for the post, giving Nevada County Judge Mark Glass a biographical sketch of his life. One other person had also applied, but Glass called Langston and offered him the job.

Currently, Langston is working to learn the position as it had no job description and will be undergoing training with Sue Harper, with the 9th District VA Office in Hope. “My goal is to make this a functioning, 21st century veteran’s office,” he said. He wants the office to be a place where veterans can come for anything, even if it’s only to sit and talk. The office will be open Mondays and Tuesdays from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. Those needing Langston’s help or services after hours can call 501-352-1937. “I’ll help in any way I can. One day,” he said, “I want to get all of the veteran’s in Nevada County together and do something.”