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A Humble Hero

Today I participated in the funeral service of a man that was a next-door neighbor to me and my family for 28 years and an active charter member of my 52-year-old church. He was a rock of support to others with a quiet wisdom that made him one much sought in times of difficulty.

He died four days ago, and I simply can’t shake the feeling of a deeply personal loss.  

If we’re fortunate, we have close to us folks around whom we can pattern a life. Intuitively, we know the day will come when we will part company with them in this life. “Sooner or later,” I would say to myself and my wife, “the men and women who were there for us will be caught up in the inevitable movement of time.” But in my heart I never thought “sooner.”

It was always “later.” Well, “later” came.

I knew he served in the Pacific Theater in WWII, and I knew he was involved in the re-taking of the Philipines, the liberation of our soldiers held prisioner there, and the occupation of post-war Japan. What I didn’t know, after knowing him for 50 years and living next door to him for 28 of those years, was that he was twice-awarded the Bronze Star for personal valour under fire.

In the end, humility was among the greatest lessons he taught me.   

James D. Sutton, Psychologist

November 3, 2010 Posted by | adversity, family, Healthy living, Inspirational, patriotism | Leave a comment