Remembering 9/11: The Real Life Hero of We Were Soldiers
September 11th will live forever in the memories of Americans. We here at Simple Truths want to honor service men and women who have, that day and over the past eight years, devoted their lives to improving the state of our world. We also want to honor the memory of those who lost their lives in the event eight years ago today.
As a tribute, we would like to share a special radio interview with the author of A Tender Warrior. Lt. Gen. Hal Moore served America during the Vietnam War. Named as one of the top 100 military generals of all time, Hal Moore fought the famous Battle of Ia Drang, where he and his 300 troops were outnumbered by the estimated 2,000 soldiers surrounding his company. They endured the battle, and General Moore commemorated their struggle in his book, We Were Soldiers Once... and Young. The book was made into a 2002 movie called We Were Soldiers, starring Mel Gibson. Here's what General Moore had to say to his men the first day he took command:
"We're a good Battalion, but we're gonna get a hell of a lot better. I will do my best and expect the same from each of you. We will be... without equal. We will be the best infantry Battalion in the world! Now go back to your barracks and get rid of all the 2nd place trophies. From now on, only 1st place trophies will be awarded, accepted or displayed in this outfit. In our line of work if we come in second, we are defeated on the battlefield. From now on, we are interested only in winning! We are without equal!"
Di Chapman, founder of the company Quotepourri (unique products designed to encourage and inspire), had the privilege to interview Hal Moore on her radio show, Better Times After 50, hosted on AdviceRadio.com. Click here to hear the General talk about the battle.
Equally notable to the General's bravery is his desire to reconcile. Here's an excerpt from A Tender Warrior:
Ever so gently, General An placed his arm in mine as we stood over a foxhole. We had traveled a very long journey from war to peace. Col. Tran Minh Hao, one of An's soldiers, accompanied us during the battlefield visit. As we dined that night in Pleiku, he beautifully expressed through a poem the unity we all felt in the circle that day. "...We have come to you this afternoon... feeling the loss of each of you... we come to span a bridge... untroubled by ancient rifts... we look together towards the future... we leave old hates for new friendships... forever in peace and harmony." Spontaneous gestures of respect and friendship followed Hao's poem. I took off my wristwatch and offered it as a gift to General An. Gladly, he accepted the gift. Then, he removed his much-prized three star pith helmet and offered it to me. Stunned, I accepted his most personal gift. Our eyes locked, as the door to our hearts had been fully opened to each other.
We hope you have taken something away from this salute today. Stand tall and walk proudly!