Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

October 9, 2010

Terry tapped for ballot

Local business owner, veteran picked to run in Porter’s place

PRINCETON — A Mercer County business owner and veteran has been selected by the Mercer County Republican Executive Committee to run for the legislative seat that was vacated when Delegate Mike Porter, R-Mercer, passed away in September.

Charles “Chuck” Terry Jr., 51, lives on Black Oak Mountain near Princeton. County Republicans asked Terry after a teleconference Thursday if he would run for office on the November ballot, said Roman Stauffer, the executive committee’s chairman.

Terry said he learned Thursday that he been selected when he was asked if he was interested in running.

“I found out last night,” Terry said Friday. “Mike and I were friends. I really liked Mike, and he was a real man who was working for our state.”

Terry had offered to serve when the executive committee started seeking nominees for a person to serve for the remainder of Porter’s term. He said he had determined to help whoever was selected even if he was not chosen.

“I was going to do whatever I could to support whoever was on the ballot,” Terry said. “When I was asked if I was still interested, I said, ‘Yes, absolutely, I’d be honored.’”

Terry drove Friday to Charleston and filed his candidacy with the West Virginia Secretary of State’s Office.

“It’s official,” he said.

Terry is the owner of CET Contracting, Inc. in Princeton. He said that he has never held public office, but he ran for magistrate in 2004 and 2008. His parents are originally from Fayette County, and he grew up in Michigan.

“In 1995 I moved into West Virginia,” Terry recalled. “My mom and dad were West Virginians, and while I grew up in Michigan, mom always said I was a West Virginian and I felt like it; so it felt like coming home.”

Before coming to West Virginia, Terry used in the U.S. Navy from 1976 to 1989.

“I was a chief petty officer in the navy and I served aboard fast attack subs,” he said.

Gov. Joe Manchin announced Thursday that he had chosen Thomas Mike Porter Jr. of Bluefield to complete the term of his father, Thomas Mike Porter Sr. The term ends in November.

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