This weekend, I lost a friend and hero. He was the living embodiment of all a hero should be, and was strong till the end. In an attempt to process & work through everything that has happened from Thursday to Sunday, and so that I always remember, I've written this below. Originally, I was not going to post this -- it seems far too personal somehow. But on the other hand, this was and is a true hero. I want you to know him, I want you to remember him, I want you to honor him by remembering him and living your life to the fullest - and by always, always, always honoring our veterans and currently-serving troops. There were many others who knew him far better than I, and were able to visit him more often than I was before he left us. But I must pay tribute to him as best I can, for I loved him and his precious wife and family. Please accept this for what it is - a tribute to a real hero, and may your heart be touched by his courageous example, as mine was.
He was treated cruelly upon his return from Vietnam, as so many of our veterans were. But I have not the slightest doubt that in Heaven, God made it up to him hugely with the biggest, best welcome home parade and celebration EVER.