LONGS, S.C. (WBTW) — After 39 years apart, two boot camp buddies were reunited Tuesday in Horry County.

Nancy Lewis and Kristine Murray met while they were in U.S. Army boot camp in October 1983, and on Tuesday, News13 was there when Lewis paid a surprise visit to her old friend at the Cakes by the Sea bakery she operates in Longs.

Nancy Lewis and Kristine Murray, center, with Lewis’ other family members on Tuesday. Photo courtesy of Nancy Lewis
Nancy Lewis (Cubbage) and Kristine Murray in boot camp. Photo courtesy of Nancy Lewis

Lewis served active duty in the Army for seven and a half years, while Murray served three years in the National Guard. The two had been searching for each other for almost 40 years, until Murray’s daughter, Karly, found Lewis on Facebook in 2022 and connected the two.

Before Tuesday, the two women had only talked on the phone.

“One day I said, man, I wish I could find my buddy from the Army,” Murray said. “Her name is Nancy Cubbage. I haven’t seen her in forever and we got along good,” And Karly pulls her phone out and she goes, ‘is this her?’ and there’s her picture. And I freaked out and then that’s how it started.

“I called her, she called me back … and now she surprised me today,” Murray said.

Lewis told News13 via email that the two “got each other through boot camp for 6 weeks.”

“She was my everything that got me through other rough times in training,” she said.

Lewis said her only wish was that her parents could have been there to join in on the reunion.

“She spent Thanksgiving Day with us when my parents and my two sisters came down for the day for family time,” Lewis said. “[Murray’s] parents did not make it, so she was given permission to join our family to the day.”

While her parents were not there, Lewis’ sisters were able to be there for the surprise.

“I am just so glad that we are reunited, and I thank her daughter for reaching out.” Lewis said.

The two are also thankful for social media.

“We thank Facebook because back then in ’83, there was no phones, no cameras really. That’s why we only have the one picture…and it’s just amazing.”