sunset from behind the wire

sunset from behind the wire

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Heroes

We all have heroes in our lives -- people who we look up to. Some of those people are friends or acquaintances and still others are legends.

Smedley Darlington Butler (July 30, 1881 – June 21, 1940) is a hero of mine. Against the wishes of his father, he left high school 38 days before his seventeenth birthday to enlist in the Marine Corps during the Spanish–American War. He received a direct commission in the Marine Corps and rose to the rank of Major General. At the time, it was the highest rank in the Marine Corps. He won two Medals of Honor and the Brevet Medal (the Medal of Honor awarded to officers). At the time of his death, with three Medals of Honor, he was the most highly decorated service member in the history of the United States.

In 1935, Butler wrote a book titled War Is a Racket, where he described and criticized the workings of the United States in its foreign actions and wars, such as those he took part in. There is much more to his story and I encourage you to read about it.

A gold star shaped military medal hanging from a blue ribbon with white five-pointed starsA gold star shaped military medal hanging from a blue ribbon with white five-pointed starsA gold star shaped military medal hanging from a blue ribbon with white five-pointed stars


8 comments:

  1. Simply amazing story, and that's NOT including his MOH citations...

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    1. Yes, the pacification of the Philadelphia underworld was particularly interesting and when he got too close to the City Fathers and to Congress, they accused of of being "unstable".

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  2. Few people can walk on water. Butler, it seems, could.

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    1. He hovered over the water at about six meters.

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  3. Anyone who is a hero of yours is worth learning about.

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    1. General Butler is one of those rarities - a general officer with a profound sense of duty, bravery and responsibility. That may be a bit unfair, because I do know other general officers who fit the bill. BUT so many of them are politicians, pencil pushers and REMF's that I occasionally despair. Since Obama took office, they've essentially had to take a loyalty oath to him to get stars...

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  4. Replies
    1. He would clearly NOT qualify as presidential material in the modern age.

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