Columnist did not belittle pilot's accomplishments


This is in response to the letter to the editor from Dan Miller in the June 28 Wildcat.

Perhaps Mr. Miller should re-read Denise Frank's article about Americans choosing heroes. Wait ... "Americans ... choosing heroes." In no way did Ms. Frank "belittle" Cpt. O'Grady's accomplishments; in fact, she commended him for doing exactly what he was trained to do. I am quite sure that anyone in his position, with the same expertise, would have done the same thing survive.

The question raised by Ms. Frank's column is this: "Why do WE, as John Q. Public, make such a bid geal out of it?" In his statement, Mr. Miller has demonstrated himself to be the exact person that Ms. Frank is bringing into question.

As a veteran of the war in the Persian Gulf, I returned to the States with my unit to a hero's welcome. My friends and I were appalled at the amount of attention that was poured upon us. We wondered where that attention was (as was pointed out by Ms. Frank) for the veterans of Vietnam, Korea, Panama, or any other excursion sanctioned by the politicians in Washington.

I would suggest to Mr. Miller that the next time he wants to elevate someone to hero status he look to the common citizen that has performed a truly uncommon act of bravery. Policemen, firemen, and soldiers in uniform are brave because that is what they are trained, paid, and have chosen to do.

Stephen Hammel

Education Junior

U.S. Army Veteran

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