Heroes Walk Among Us
By John Meng, Managing Editor While a majority of people recognize their names, most have probably never read the classic literary works that chronicle the acts of heroes such as Odysseus and Beowulf.
To be honest, I have not made it all the way through The Odyssey myself, but Beowulf was a game-changer for me in the eighth-grade.
Classical heroes are most often just normal people, except they have a great talent. Sometimes that talent is a great skill, but other times it is a quality of character, like courage.
Examples of heroes range from mythological figures, such as Gilgamesh, Achilles and Hercules, to historical and modern figures, such as Joan of Arc, Alvin York, Audie Murphy, and Chuck Yeager, and fictional heroes such as Batman, Frodo Baggins, Captain America and Harry Potter.
The look and characterizations of heroes may have changed over the centuries. But heroes will always consistently be people who are admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.
And true heroes walk among us today.
The courageous men and women who serve and have served in our nation’s military are all heroes. Whether it is Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines or Coast Guard, they have all selflessly put their lives at risk to serve this great nation and to defend and preserve the freedom and liberty we all enjoy as Americans.
Just like the Classical heroes of literature, veterans are modern day heroes. They are normal people yet they possess a special courage to stand in defense of American ideals, our sovereignty and freedom. They voluntarily leave their families and endure hardships that most of us cannot even imagine. They fight for us, their children, their husbands or wives and, in some cases, for the world. Veterans put all of our needs before their own.
According to Military.com, about 180,000 young Americans enlist for active duty service in the Armed Forces every year. Some of those come from Jackson County.
Earlier this year, the American Legion Post 346 of Ganado honored the more than 60 men from Jackson County who perished during World War One, World War Two, Vietnam War, Korean War and Operation Enduring Freedom.
Veterans Day recognizes the importance of military service, and it honors the sacrifices made by active duty, Guard, Reserve troops, and family members. Please see our special Veterans Day pages in this issue of the Jackson County Herald-Tribune, beginning on page 3B.
These brave heroes walk among us every day. When you see one, please thank them for their service.