I knew Shane for 3 years in college. We had numerous classes together and worked on many projects together outside of class. He was popular with just about everybody. He was also a part of the ROTC and was deployed soon after he graduated. He survived his tour in Afghanistan. A grenade took his life in Iraq. I saw him laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery in October. The memory of his wife loosing it as she was handed his flag will forever be burned in my memory.
Heath is missing both of his legs. He lost them in Iraq. He has a young son who plays soldier by marching in place by his dad’s side. He wants to be like his dad. He doesn’t fully understand his dad’s physical limitations. From what I know of him, Heath would not want you or I to feel sorry for him. He would just want you to know that medics save more lives today in the field than in any other war, which means a greater percentage of wounded soldiers returning home than any other war. Heath currently works for a veteran’s charity. It’s called Wounded Warrior Project.
I’ve been an optimist throughout most of this war. I still remain optimistic mainly because I can’t fathom the consequences of failure. I do not want to leave a failed terrorist state to the next generation. I pray that the sacrifices of those of who have not returned home and that those who return home missing a part of themselves are not in vain.