Recent Heroes Commentaries

Featured image for “A Political Hero Remembered”
A Political Hero Remembered
Political heroes are rare. The last genuine political hero, Senator Philip S. Hart, is remembered on the front of an office building in Washington, D.C. as: “A man of incorruptible integrity and personal courage strengthened by inner grace and outer gentleness…. His humility and ethics earned him his place as the conscience of the Senate.” Last Friday (June 30), another...
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July 7, 2017
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“My Life Must Stand for Something”
In a moving commentary in Monday’s (May 29), New York Times, Documentarians Ken Burns and Lynn Novick reflect on their ten-year research detailed in an upcoming documentary, The Vietnam War. “For more than a generation,” Burns and Novick write, “instead of forging a path to reconciliation, we have allowed the wounds the war inflicted on our nation, our politics and...
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May 31, 2017
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Carl Foreman’s Real Life High Noon
One of the most iconic images in Hollywood film is a static black and white picture of a pair of train tracks trailing into a distant western landscape. By itself, it doesn’t seem to say much. However, in the western classic High Noon, the image represents a reckoning that’s coming and the man whose actions make him a reluctant hero....
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April 26, 2017
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Stand tall; Never quit; Drive on!
Heroes are hard to come by. With the death of Lt. General Hal Moore last Friday, the loss is particularly acute given his extraordinary leadership skills. There are two types of heroes, those who demonstrate physical courage in the face of extreme danger, and those who reveal moral courage – the fortitude to stand by your principles no matter the...
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February 15, 2017
Featured image for “True Grit with a Smile”
True Grit with a Smile
Growing up, I had many interests, but none could match the fascination and passion I had for the U.S. space program, especially the first, Project Mercury. When it was announced late yesterday that the last of the original seven Mercury astronauts, the first man to orbit the earth, John Glenn, had passed away at the age of 95, I felt...
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December 9, 2016
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Summer Recess
Ahhhhhh… the cool mountain air, a calm… ripple… of water peacefully moving over the lake. Oh… it’s you! While on summer break, I thought I’d offer a few links to commentaries that garnered the most attention by readers over the past seven months. First place, with the most views thus far, was my three-part series from April, Trust and Confidence,...
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August 1, 2016
Featured image for “Hey Jim, is there any good news out there?   Your faithful reader, Virginia”
Hey Jim, is there any good news out there? Your faithful reader, Virginia
Yes, Virginia, good news does exist. Sumeja Tulic reported to the website “[A] few minutes before the train arrived, a man in his late 50s/early 60s fell on the subway tracks. Without hesitation, 3 men jumped on the subway track and pulled him out. The man was unconscious and bleeding.” “Ms. Tulic,” The New York Times reports (June 14),...
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June 24, 2016
Featured image for “A Bracelet, a War and Memories”
A Bracelet, a War and Memories
Maj. John Baldwin (Ret.) is a good friend, former vascular surgeon who served in Vietnam and frequent reader of this site. He submitted the following story to me about former classmate and Vietnam POW Maj. Glenn Wilson. It begins with finding a bracelet. When the Gator Harbor dredge operators pumping out Stevenson Creek near Tampa, Florida back in the spring...
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May 30, 2016
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But How Many Others?
Good news about Dennis Haines… finally! Last week, I wrote about Vietnam Vet. Dennis Haines’s difficulty in getting a medication approved by the V.A. for treatment for Hepatitis C – an infectious disease that he contracted after he had unintentionally received tainted blood while being treated by the 24th Evacuation Hospital in Long Binh. One week ago, I had contacted...
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May 9, 2016
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Dennis Haines and the V.A. – Update
Last month, I wrote that SP4 Dennis Haines (Ret.) was one of approximately 174,000 Viet Nam vets who had contracted Hepatitis C through tainted blood. However, due to the extreme cost of the drug, Sofosbuvir, only about 15 percent have been treated thus far. After having been hit by two AK-47 rounds to the right side of his head in...
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March 21, 2016