True American Heroes
Never Forget Them

When I Was A Kid In Grade School I Saw The Picture Above In A History Book
Six Men Raising A Flag In The Heat Of A Battle
I Was In Awe Of Them
I Was Mesmerized That These Men Unfearing Of Their Own Lives Or Safety
They Were So Proud Of Our Flag And Our Country
That They Risked Life And Limb For Their Country To Do This
I Checked Out A Book From The Library
I Wanted To Learn More About These Men
It Wasn't Long Before I Learned What The Word "Hero" Meant

I Was A Kid

I Couldn't Fathom What These Men Went Through
Killing To Me Was Shooting My Cap Guns At My Playmates
I Watched Them Fall Down And Play Dead
But Kill Or Be Killed Was Reality To These Six Men
It Was Not A Game To Them
They Gave Everything They Had To Fight For The Freedom Of Our Country
I Will Forever Salute Them For Their Bravery

All Of These Years Later

I Had Forgotten About That Picture And Had Forgot About Those Heroes
Then I Recieved An E-Mail With A Picture Attached
It Was From Some New Friends That We Had Made On Line
It Was A Picture Of Five Marines And A Navy Hospital Corpsman
It Was The Six Men Raising The Flag On Mount Suribachi
It Was The Same Picture That Had Amazed Me When I Was A Kid
His Wife Had Sent Me The Picture Of Those Six Men, Raising The Flag
She Asked Me If I Recognized It
I Thought She Was Trying To Find Out What The Photo Was About
I Thought That Maybe She Thought It Was A Photograph Taken In Vietnam
I Researched It Online For Her
I Even Sent Her Links To The History Of That Picture
The Memories Of That Picture And My Childhood Came Flooding Back
I Thought That I Was Teaching Her Something
I Was Educating Her, Right?

Man Was I Wrong

Her Husband Was The Son Of One Of The Men In That Picture
I Had The Honor And Privelege Of Meeting The Son Of One Of Those Men Online
I Will Not Say Which One It Was Because I Was Asked Not To

But I Did Say To His Son
"Your Dad Is A Hero To Me And Always Will Be"
"If Not For Men Like Him And Thousands Upon Thousands Of Others"
"We Would Not Live In A Free Country"
"I Have The Utmost Respect For Him"

It Was Then That I Realized That All I Had Thought About For Many Years
Was My Own Experiences In Vietnam
I Had Forgotten About All Of America's Heros
That Picture Made Me Realize That I Am Not Alone
That Many Have Went Before Me And Many Have Gone After Me
I Will Never Forget Any Of America's Heroes Ever Again

I Fought In Vietnam

As A Kid, Who Knew What Vietnam Was Or Where It Was
Who Knew Then
That A Few Years Later That I Would Be In Some Country Called Vietnam
Along With Thousands Of Other Men
Ready To Give Our Life For The Freedom Of Our Country
Who Knew That I Would Be One Of The Ones That Would Come Back
Why Does God Take Some And Let Others Survive?
Only God Knows

Vietnam, Like Any War, Had Differences In Logistics
Who We Were Fighting And How We Fought Them
But It All Remains The Same
Heroes Are Made By War
Never Forget Them

Any Man Or Woman That Fights In A War
Is An American Hero
So If You Wonder Where America's Heroes Are
Take A Look At The Six Men On This Page
Take A Look At Your Mailman
Take A Look At The Retired Man Next Door
Take A Look At Your Your Neighbor's Son Or Daughter
Take A Look At Yourself In Your Mirror
You Just Might Be Looking At One Of America's True Heroes

Again You Ask
Where Are Our Heroes?
Well Below Are Six Of Them
And History Books Contain Many More Like Them
The Sacrifices Made By These Men
And The Men And Women
Who Came Before And After Them Should Never Be Forgotten

CopyRight 2000-
Rick "Irockblue"
Rasky's VietNam Memorial
All Rights Reserved

Six Heros On Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima
And Thousands Of Other Un-named Heroes
Some Came Back And Some Gave All
6,821 American Heros Died In Iwo Jima
We Should Never Forget Their Loss For Preserving Our Freedom
We Should Never Forget The Losses Of Any War

American Heroes

A Hero From Time And Space Finds A Place In Our Hearts
It Makes Us Strong, Where We Belong, What We Strive To Be
They Give Us Hope, Letting Us Know We Can Achieve Great Things
A Hero Is A Soldier, A Teacher, A Friend, A Neighbor
We All Have Them, Like A Shining Star, To Guide Us Along
A Hero Has Learned That Sacrifice Is Essential To Growth
A Hero Has Learned To Overcome Defeat
A Hero Gives Of Themselves Without Expectation Of Reward
In Each Heart A Hero Lies
It Is Up To Us To Set Them Free
It Is Up To Us To Release The Hero Each Of Us Can Be

CopyRight 2000-
Bobbie "Irockslady"
Rasky's VietNam Memorial
All Rights Reserved

Five Marines And A Navy Hospital Corpsman
Raise The Flag On Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima
They Used A Piece Of Japanese Pipe As A Mast, February 23, 1945
Three Of The Flag Raisers Were Later Killed As The Fighting Raged On
By March 16, When Iwo Jima Was Declared Secured
6,821 Americans And 21,000 Japanese, The Entire Force, Had Died
The Flag Raising Photo And Subsequent Statue Came To Symbolize Being A Marine

There Are Six Flag Raisers In The Photo
Four In The Front Line And Two In Back

The Front Four Are Left To Right
Ira Hayes, Franklin Sousley, John Bradley And Harlon Block

The Back Two Are
Michael Strank (Behind Sousley) And Rene Gagnon (Behind Bradley)

Strank, Block And Sousley Would Die Shortly Afterwards
Bradley, Hayes And Gagnon Became National Heroes Within Weeks

Six True American Heroes
Look Into The Eyes Of Any Of These Men
And You Will See True American Heroes
These Are Men That Fought For Our Freedom

Rene Gagnon American Hero
Born--Manchester, N.H. March 7, 1925
Died--Manchester, N.H. October 12, 1979
He Was The Youngest Survivor And The Man Who Carried The Flag Up Mt. Suribachi
He Was The First Survivor To Arrive Back In The U.S.

Mike Strank American Hero
Born--1919 Jarabenia, Czechoslovakia
Died--1945 Iwo Jima, Japan

Harlon Block American Hero
Born--1924 Yorktown, Texas
Died--1945 Iwo Jima, Japan

Franklin Sousley American Hero
Born--Sept. 19, 1925 Hilltop, KY
Died--March 21, 1945 Iwo Jima, Japan

Ira Hayes American Hero
Born--January 12, 1923 Sacaton, Arizona
Died--January 24, 1955 Bapchule, Arizona
Ira Hayes Was A Pima Indian

John Bradley American Hero
Born--July 10, 1923 Antigo, Wisconsin
Died--January 11, 1994 Antigo, Wisconsin

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