I've been thinking a lot lately (this usually elicits a snide comment from DH, but I digress), what with the nasty terror threat we're under. Thinking about a young man who is somewhere in Afghanistan right now doing who knows what. This young man is a US Army Ranger. Isn't he handsome?
He started college in 2008 and joined Army ROTC. In the middle of two wars, he joined the Army. "Why?" I asked his mother. "It's what he wants to do," she replied. He's not stupid. He was accepted at West Point twice! But I had to wonder. He excelled academically and in ROTC. He graduated in 2012 and after some initial training, he started Ranger training. "Why?" I asked his mother. I got the same reply I got the first time. "It's what he wants to do."
I followed his progress through Ranger training. His mother dutifully detailed his progress based on a book he'd given her. All I have to say is HOLY CRAP! I am beyond impressed with what this young man and his classmates and the classes before him accomplished.
And now he's deployed. Of course he is, he's an elite Army Ranger. This is what he trained for. He calls it a business trip. HA I pray for him every day. I've known this young man all his life. I've known his mother almost all my life.
I can't answer "why" he's trained as hard as he has to go into danger, willingly go into danger. I don't know what he'd say if I asked him "why." I need to ask him that some day.
When I think of him and his brothers and sisters in arms, across all branches of the military, it clarifies for me why I write military heroes. It goes beyond a handsome face and a buff body in a uniform, although that doesn't hurt.
What's not to love about a man (or woman) who puts the safety of his country and its citizens ahead of his own safety. This is a person, who, even with the knowledge that he (or she) may end up in the heat of the battle, still makes the commitment, voluntarily, to something greater than himself (or herself). I don't understand it. But I am oh so grateful.
I get all kinds of good shivers just thinking about the intensity that comes with that level of selfless commitment. And when that intensity is turned on the heroine...YUM! Then there's the duty and honor that are such a part of our military personnel. It doesn't get turned off when the uniform comes off (not going there!!). Our heroines reap the benefits of those values.
Our heroine is very lucky women, indeed, when the hero turns his attention in her direction!
And we're all very lucky that these men are more than just figments of our imagination.
If you're so inclined, I know I would appreciate any prayers, thoughts, and good wishes for my Ranger. His mother would appreciate it, too. If you're inclined to help out my Ranger and his unit with cards or goodies, feel free to email me at FeliciaForella at comcast dot net.
American Soldier - Toby Keith