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I need to respond to the new contest....Inspired By Song! September Contest Announcement! http://activerain.com/blogsview/683137/Inspired-By-Song-September
When I think of inspired by Heroes as well as 9/11, I think of the title of this contest...HEROES....Not Hero. I have two Heroes that I'd tie together. In many ways, with the date of this contest, I can't help but think of 9/11, war and the milatary when I think of this contest. But that's hardly the limit of my thoughts. Heroes need to be a person or people that truly inspire you to the core of your being. So, without further adieu....
Hero Number 1:
The way the world spins is that all males try to live up to impress their fathers. I could be 80 and my dad 100 and I'd still be trying to win his approval. I really do think that's the way God made men. Fortunately, I scored and A+ in the father department.
My dad was awesome growing up. He worked hard and was a great example for us and our family. He is 71 years old and doesn't have to work, but when I asked him last year why he doesn't retire, he specifically said "I have to figure out what I want to do when I retire. I'm not going to be one of those old farts who sits around and waits to die." Wow! 70+ and still leading wagon train! He still flies to the Arctic Circle every year with all of the 4 sons and sleeps on the ground in a tent to fish 10 hours a day every summer. He still goes skiing in the Rocky Mountains down double black diamond slopes. Total guy's guy.
He was always a great dad. Love all the guy stuff. Was a great example. Worked hard. When he worked, he was gone, but when he was here, he was very hands on. He'd play football with us in the backyard, take us to Colorado to go mountain climbing, canada fishing, back to Colorado for skiing and just didn't let an opportunity for fun family stuff to be passed up. He'd wrestle with us and pay us a quarter if we gave him a bloody nose. Tooooo coool as a kid.
Although he was beyond draft age, he was going to be drafted b/c there were no age limits for being a doctor in Viet Nam. He had 3 kids at the time. My grandfather, who was on the draft board told him that his name was coming up in the next week or two so he enlisted. He never spoke about Nam, as he didn't care for what he experienced or saw. He disliked the military so much that he wouldn't allow us to go to Marmion Military Academy High School. He was protecting us from what he went through.
So, in honor of dad, I throw out Bruce Springsteen's "No Surrender". It's really about keep dreaming. Never losing your dreams, never quitting, never surrendering. Dad always told me that I can do anything I set my mind to. He always said it's 10% brain power and 90% ass power. I've never let my dreams die. Mom was and is the great encourager. In fact, I'd go as far to say that mom is a prayer warrior and I believe FULLY that I owe my current personal relationship with Christ and his church because of her relentless prayer, but that's another post altogether....Dad just told me to kick ass. Even though Bruce Springsteen is a left wing political nazi, he does write some great music. The song is perfect....just NO SURRENDER. I think that every guy wants to and needs to hear that from his father. This song also alludes to blood brothers that were fighting in Nam together. Reminds me of the sacrifice that dad did for our country and our family. Thanks dad.
HEROES is plural. And on this 9/11 I dedicate another song to another hero of mine. My second hero tying into the military theme was my Grandfather Charles Peter Vogel. There are a couple of reasons for this.
He was an awesome grandfather. He was an attorney in a small town in Iowa. He helped Truman and Kennedy get elected to political office and was offered a position in DC. He declined. He found more satisfaction and value in helping the farmer than taking a political big wig position with power, fame and fortune. When I would drive out to spend time with them when I got to college, I realized that he had fame and fortune in small town U.S.A. He was a humble servant who put family before anything else. He could have taking a power position, but for him, the power was in raising a great family. Grandpa did a great job. He gave me my mother, the prayer warrior and a great source of family strength.
Another interesting tidbit was that Grandpa was a devout Catholic born on the 4th of July. How patriotic can one man be? He used to tell us that he had the best birthday that anyone could ever ask for. We would go to the local park where the fireworks were being lit and thousands of people would be laying on their blankets watching the show. He'd say, "look all my friends came out to celebrate with me. Look at this party and the FIREWORKS." I just thought it was the coolest thing. When my youngest, Tessa, was born she was born on July 6th. I'll never forgive her for this. I was tempted to get my wife on a trampoline just to have her born on the 4th. What a disappointment after having serious contractions...."GRANDPA...I TRIED!!!"
He was devout in following his faith. He'd hit daily mass often. He'd never miss a Sunday and my father, his son-in-law, said that he was the most fair man that he'd ever met. That says a lot when you're getting kudos from the in-laws.
His favorite song was Battle Hymn of the Republic. I chose this particular version because it's such a patriotic song. It's a military song and this particular version was sung when Pope Benedict made his first visit to the United States in April of this year.
Two great Heroes that I want to feature during this time of remembrance of 9/11. We all need people to inspire us. The men and women who have served since 9/11 are huge inspirations to us all. But for the male role model, I couldn't have had two better ones than my father and grandfather.
If you choose, you can find me here:
NMLS ID#158606 An Illinois Residential Mortgage Licensee
1 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. 2 In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know.” (John 14:1-4, New King James Version)
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