Island Vibes December 2023

9 BUSINESS Passing the baton to the next generation By Robbie Berg IOP Exchange Club What Marty Bettelli and his grandson Elijah Price experienced Oct. 7 during the IOP Connector Run was exactly what the run is all about. The charity event benefits 11 child abuse prevention agencies through grants from the Isle of Palms Exchange Club. Marty Bettelli, a 50 plus year Isle of Palms resident and former IOP City Council member, walked with Elijah’s sister, Margaret, while his 9-year-old grandson ran the race with his mother and father Bridget and Kevin Price. Of course Bettelli is well known on the island for the various civic duties he has performed. Born in Alberta, Canada, Bettelli grew up in Washington state. I am sure if told early in his life that he would be living “the life” on the Isle of Palms, he would never have imagined it. In high school he ran track, pole vaulted and even played football. Bettelli came to Charleston during his service in the Navy and met his wife Linda Condon, a native of Sullivan’s Island, while stationed here. Again, he never would have imagined that he would marry a “Southern island girl” in January 1978, which he recounts with pride. After his service in the Navy on submarines, he worked at Avco-Lycoming in North Charleston, which made helicopter engines. In 2002, he retired from his project manager position with BellSouth. The City of Isle of Palms owes much gratitude to Bettelli for his 20 years on the city council, during which he served on the personnel, public works, public safety and the ways and means committees. Additionally, he served as the CARTA representative for the City of Isle of Palms. As you can tell, community service is in Bettelli’s blood, so he joined the Isle of Palms Exchange Club nine years ago. He has volunteered for the Isle of Palms Connector Run for six years and the oyster roast for eight years. Whenever anyone asks, “Can you help?” Bettelli is always there. For the last two years, he has served on the Isle of Palms Exchange Board and was treasurer last year. This story came to light when Bettelli “proudly” announced at the October IOP Exchange Board meeting that his grandson had finished first in the IOP Connector Run! What a proud grandfather. Elijah is a fourth grade student at Sullivan’s Island Elementary School. He loves math and thinks maybe he will pursue a career in that area. However, for now he loves to run and play tennis. He will also tell you about his proudest accomplishment of running the Cooper River Bridge Run with his mother Bridget. Way to go Elijah! In closing, let this story be a lesson to all grandparents that encouragement can go a long way. Bettelli concluded our interview by saying, “We knew Elijah loved to run when at the age of 4, he asked to run from the IOP Rec Center to our home. We said ‘Yes,’ but drove alongside him in our golf cart all the way to our home over a mile to Hartnett Boulevard.” Way to go Marty and Linda for the encouragement that you gave to your young grandson and continue to give! And for your continued support of the IOP Connector Run for the prevention of child abuse! Photo Provided