Army of Mom

So this is how liberty dies ... with thunderous applause.

5.02.2006

In his own words :No sacrifice is easy

I just happened to open up the Dallas Morning News today and a picture of a handsome soldier holding his new baby caught my eye and I had to read it.

'No sacrifice is easy' by Lynn Woolley
When an Army captain gives his life for Iraqi freedom, that's heroism
posted 08:46 AM CDT on Monday, May 1, 2006

Several times during the memorial service for Capt. Ian Patrick Weikel, his friends and family referred to him as a hero.

Capt. Weikel was killed April 18 when his Humvee was destroyed by a roadside bomb in Iraq. He was Commander "Ghost 6" A Troop, 7-10 Cavalry of the 4th Infantry Division – and a father, son and husband.
And there is no doubt: He was a hero.Capt. Weikel, 31, his wife, Wendy and their infant son – originally from Colorado Springs, Colo. – had been adopted by Temple Bible Church near the sprawling Fort Hood military reservation. I didn't know the family but, like hundreds of other members of that congregation, I attended the service to show our respect.

With tears flowing freely, friends and family who knew him best told the rest of us what kind of a person he was. He was a West Point graduate who had served in Bosnia and was serving his second tour in Iraq. He loved his family, his country and his God. He was said to have carried a list of his men with him at all times so he could pray for their safety. He also carried scans of ultrasound images of his new son. Jonathan, now just 8 months old, will not remember his father, but he will be told of his wonderful legacy.

I was struck by many things at this service, including the military roll call during which Capt. Weikel's name was answered by a rifle volley. And there was the last line of his biography in the church bulletin: "It was not the way Ian died that made him a hero; it was the way he lived."

The word "hero" has been co-opted, twisted, mangled, misused, maligned and misapplied. Michael Jordan was deemed a hero for playing in a basketball game even though he was ill. Vince Young was called a hero for his accomplishments in the Rose Bowl. Even George H.W. Bush once commented that he never felt he was a hero for being shot down over the Pacific in World War II.

The former president is right. It wasn't his being shot down that made him heroic but rather the fact that he was willing to put his life on the line for someone else.

And so a service such as this one really makes you stop and think. Cindy Sheehan, whose son Casey was killed in the war, and Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha, himself a decorated veteran, both are critics of the war. Do their contentions that Mr. Bush "misled" us into this war outweigh the truths that Saddam Hussein spat in the face of 17 U.N. resolutions and that spreading democracy in the Middle East may be the only way to avoid an all-out war with radical Islam?

There's another point of view that sums up our mission in Iraq better than I ever could:

"No sacrifice is easy and the loss of every soldier is heart-wrenching. However, the liberty of 26 million people is worth it. The Iraqi people were under the boot of an oppressive and ruthless regime. When we have the means and political will we must act.

"A large amount of the population is under the age of 18. The guys on patrol can attest to this as they're mobbed daily by the 'munchkin brigades' demanding chocolate and soccer balls. You see these children and can't help but feel that their future is worth it.

"It's an uncertain future fraught with danger and the pitfalls of an emerging government with no democratic tradition and sectarian tension. It's an uphill battle, and they're fighting against all odds to succeed ... incredibly difficult odds.

"That doesn't mean we should give up on them or turn our back on the efforts and sacrifice of the past three years. The new Iraq is an underdog, and Americans traditionally love an underdog. Don't forget that about 230 years ago, we were fighting for our freedom against all odds. Over our history we've had to overcome a civil war, world wars and nuclear annihilation. Over our history we've saved millions of lives from around the globe through our willingness to act on behalf of our fellow man."

These are the words of Capt. Weikel, taken from his Web site.

I thank him and his family for their sacrifice. Capt. Ian Weikel is a hero.

Lynn Woolley is a radio talk show host on the SSI network. His e-mail address is lynn@belogical.com.

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What a tribute to this man. If you read the links, you'll see how his wife is remembering him, too. My prayers are with his family.

7 Comments:

  • At 9:43 PM, May 02, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    This is truly a great HERO for what he has done and will be missed for what he could of done.
    A great leader.

    SEMPER FI

     
  • At 1:24 PM, May 07, 2006, Anonymous Domingos said…

    "He loved his family, his country and his God" - If there was a God, i'm trully sure he wouldn't love him or his country, for the actions they are making. "the liberty of 26 million people is worth it" - Do you trully believe that? And what is the Liberty of the Hundreds of Millions of children dying in Africa worth of? "When we have the means and political will we must act." - You have the means to do, so you must act? Pff... You should really get a life.

     
  • At 9:03 PM, May 07, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Well doming ass, what in the hell are you doing for these people?
    Tell allah I said hello maybe he can help you.

    Semper Fi,AoM

     
  • At 10:10 PM, May 07, 2006, Blogger Army of Mom said…

    In America, we are taught not to just sit by and watch things happen - but to do our best to help and change things for the better. It is not something people around the globe agree with, but it is our way.

    You'll see even our lefty-liberal politicos have their feelings. Those dying in Africa and abroad break my heart, as well. We do what we can, but we can't save the world.

    It is like being on an airplane, you have to save yourself before you can save your children or the infirm around you. We can only do so much at a time.

    *shrug*

    Thanks to my Marine for smacking down the troll.

     
  • At 7:25 AM, May 08, 2006, Anonymous Army of Dad said…

    I suppose Domingo has never heard the old saying "those who do not remember history are doomed to reapeat it".

    We deal with dictators however we feel we must. Hitler taught us that it is unwise to attempt to placate them (yes there were others who should have taught us before him too, tell that to Chamberlin!)

    Africa is a shithole. Always has been and very likely always will be. Throwing money at that problem will not fix it. We can fix Iraq, and if things break our way help democracy flourish in the Middle East, just as we have in Europe and Japan.

     
  • At 10:27 PM, October 03, 2006, Blogger chancuff said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

     
  • At 12:58 AM, October 27, 2009, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I thank my Lord every night that I had the chance to follow such a great Leader. This Man Loved his Soldiers and his Soldiers Loved him. I will see him again and until then I know he is in the arms of the Lord.
    SSG Leonard
    1 PLT A TRP 7-10 CAV

     

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