2013-07-04 / Community News



From time to time, in this space, I will issue an award recognizing those who have best fulfilled the new National Motto, “Shut Up and Do Something”.

Fortunately, I have a large budget, as the first award has to come in multiples as there are five recipients.

Here are their names: Harlon Block, Franklin Sousby, Michael Strank, Rene Gagnon, and Ira Hayes.

Why are they getting the award? Because, in one of the most perilous of times, they dared to climb a mountain and plant the American flag as a sign of encouragement to their comrades.

Their work, accomplished years after a popular song raised the most poignant question (O, say, does that Star-Spangled banner yet wave?) answered it with a resounding “Yes!”

You may know that the mountain was called Suribachi and that it stood in the midst of a World War II battleground on the island of Iwo Jima.

Three of these men subsequently lost their lives. The others lived to tell the story. The photograph of their action became the model for the Marine Corp War Memorial.

Now you know that the award will be tough to get, but surely there are some Americans who don’t mind the struggle to keep this “the land of the free and the home of the brave”.

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