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Golden Moms, Sisters of Fallen Heroes

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As The Tillman Story began playing in theaters , Nadia Mccaffrey asked Dwayne Hunn to write something about a couple special Patricks.

TillmanKneeling by CBS

He didn't like being set up as a hero. He didn't seek adulation. He didn't prance about as a hero.

He liked letting his actions speak for him. He was comfortable just setting the right example. He believed that when bad things were done one should participate in setting things right.

He was big and strong. He was a professional football player.

To his parents not just he, but all their children were heroes.

You can learn more about him when you see The Patrick Tillman Story now showing in movie houses across the county.

After you see the movie, you must decide if this good man was setup. You must decide how your family would handle such a loss.

You should decide whether just the American deaths (now over 7,000) and casualties (officially over 32,000 but estimated over 100,000) in Afghanistan and Iraq are worth making this many fallen heroes so far from Middle America's needs and shores.

As you ponder public policy and fallen heroes, consider the loss carried by Mary Tillman's good friend and Gold Star burdened mother, who represents so many other Gold Star Mothers.

Reread those first three paragraphs. Everything said there, except the last sentence, applies to another Patrick, Patrick McCaffrey.

Another Patrick, Another Gold Star Mom

The day after 911, this Patrick, compelled like Patrick Tillman, told his Vietnam Veteran father and Hospice mother that he had to do "something." He trusted his recruiter's words that he would be stationed stateside. Believing in his government's competence and veracity, this well paid father of two joined the 579th Engineer Battalion's Alpha Company of Santa Rosa, who had not been involved in combat since World war II.

Within six months, this Patrick was in a tent near Balad, Iraq, protecting FortAnaconda, training Iraqis, and fighting and searching for insurgents.

He was Alpha Company's strongest man, the one consistently relied on to carry the extra load, like the second-hand, 70+ lb. radio gear. He was the enlisted men's leader to whom they came to carry their grievances to the officer corps, lifesaving paramedic, and cell phone lender to any depressed soldier in need of an uplifting phone home.

When you see The Tillman Story, you will wonder about cover-ups, public relations campaigns, strange reports, non-reports, and how the murder of an outspoken leader like Patrick Tillman could have happened and been misreported for so long.

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Dwayne served in the Peace Corps in the slums of Mhumbhai, India, worked several Habitat Projects, and was on the start-up team of the California Conservation Corps. He has a Ph.D. from Claremont Graduate Universty, has been a builder, teacher, (more...)

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Two more tragically dead heroes that should remind... by Dwayne Hunn on Thursday, Oct 7, 2010 at 7:07:55 AM