June 8, 2007

Night of Heroes

I had the distinct honor last night of attending a gala event, the Night of Heroes for the Pentagon Federal Credit Union Foundation. (The Foundation assists military personnel in financial matters and lends a hand to those wounded in the war on terrorism.) The evening was a fundraiser and a recognition ceremony for many of our military heroes. As such, it was an inspiring evening. But let me tell you what else I got out of the night.

Seated at my table were four of our finest military personnel. The first was a soldier who had been wounded in Iraq and is currently living at Fisher House while he obtains medical treatment. The second was a military doctor at Walter Reed, one that treats the mental injuries of war as well as the physical injuries. The third was a military nurse, who was in Kuwait when the war started in 2003. She worked at the first Combat Support Hospital in Iraq and came home to work as a civilian at Walter Reed. The final veteran I want to mention is a seaman who served in World War II and told us stories of his ship sinking and what it felt like to lose a buddy to the fight.

What do these four have in common? They are heroes, they are strong, they have sacrificed themselves and their lives for freedom and their patriotism. Each of these heroes talked about how war changed them, made them stronger and made them appreciate all that we take for granted. I didn't catch the names of these soldiers, airman and sailor, but I say a thank you - a thank you for their service and for opening my eyes to the individual, lasting sacrifice that is made by our military personnel everyday.

As Senator Jim Bunning said last night, "Patriotism is contagious." If he is right, then I hope you have caught a good case of it from me, as I certainly did last night.


Tammy said...

I am sitting here in tears. I know just a few days from now I say good bye to my Dh who is going over to Iraq.
I bet that was an emotional and inspiring evening.

Leslie said...

Patriotism is so contagious...and I don't say that just because I'm a proud spouse to an USAF soldier. Fisher House is a wonderful place...my Enlisted Spouses Club in Utah donated to them last year.

Di said...

What a beautiful and profound statement. Glad it was such a wonderful event, and GOD BLESS all our heroes.

JR said...

Hi - Glad you got to go - You need to tell me about it!! JR

Jennifer said...

It sounds like an amazing evening. I can't think of anyone more underappreciated or necessary than our armed forces. Thanks for sharing your story.