Memorials to veterans should be out front

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 12, 2003

A long stretch of Interstate I-65 south of Montgomery, AL, is called &uot;Heroes Highway&uot;! A long stretch of Interstate I-20 east of Atlanta, GA, is called &uot;The Purple Heart Highway&uot;! Both state governments should be congratulated

for their leadership in recognizing veterans both living and dead.

Let’s talk about the word hero. What follows is my personal view, but it is shared by many veterans I know. In my mind a hero is a man or woman who has made the &uot;supreme sacrifice&uot; in the service of their country. In other words, as far as I am concerned; there are no living heroes!

The Purple Heart medal is awarded to service men and women - either living or dead - who have been wounded in action such as PFC Jessica Lynch was in Iraq. I would suppose that she would be the first one to refute the notion that she is a hero. Most veterans I know who were wounded in action - and some horribly - will tell you that they were only doing their jobs!

It is time for the City of Andalusia to memorialize heroes! There is talk of putting such a memorial &uot;in back of&uot; certain places, i.e., in back of the new city hall or in back of McDonald’s. The City of Andalusia can make a very positive statement by putting such a memorial &uot;in front of&uot; certain places, i.e., in front of

the new brick ANDALUSIA sign on the western bypass or in front of the Covington County Courthouse in the square - both locations emphasizing the high regard in which we hold our heroes.

Let’s not give our heroes the back hand by putting their memorial in the back yard. Let’s praise them by putting their memorial out front. They were &uot;out front&uot; when we needed them most!