Hero Of War

Just an idea I'm toying with. Inspired by "Hero of War" by Rise Against.

November 12th, 2004

I stare straight at the gray haired officer in front of me, the fires of determination burning in my eyes. The decision I was making was one most of my family thought was crazy, one that my friends thought was stupid and what my girlfriend called dangerous.

"So tell me kid, why you want to join the Armed Forces?" The old man asks. His accent like those gun-slinging 'cowboys you see in the western movies.

"A challenge." The old man raises an eyebrow before taking out a piece of paper, a form of some sort. "By that I mean one that will challenge me physically and mentally." This sounds kind of boastful but it's true. Until several months ago I was perfectly content with my life. I had numerous scholarships in sports such as basketball and football. I had promising future, not mention a beautiful and intelligent girlfriend to boot.

"So you think life in the Army will give ya' that challenge?" I nod at the old man. He shakes his head a bit before signing the form in front of us. "Any particular reason that's spurrin' ya' to walk down the Military career?"

The room is silent for a few precious moments as I recollect my reason for going. "My grandfather served in Normandy. My father served it Vietnam. My brother served and died in Afghanistan." The room goes silent again.

The old man scratches his head. "Well I'm sorry to hear your loss kid." My response is a simple nod, no emotions present on my face. Something my brother and my father would do. He use to be like the old me, an outgoing and care free boy with a promising future as an athlete. Heck he could have made it to the NFL. But something stopped him from doing this, instead steering him in the direction of the Armed Forces. It was also this decision that shaped him in my father's persona. Silent, emotionless and an undetermined will to never give up.

The day he left was a day of mixed feelings. My mother cried. My youngest sister cried. I admit I even cried. But it was my father's reaction that was so different from ours. He didn't cry. Instead my father hugged his eldest son and patted him on the back. "Make your country proud boy." he said, saluting him. My father only nodded at our athletic accomplishments. Now his eldest son was going off, maybe to be killed, and he was proud? 

"I'll ask you one last time kid. You sure about this?"


The veteran officer stands up and turns to a map behind him. "This isn't no sport kid. You get hit out there, there's a chance you'll never live to make the same mistake again. You'll be livin' and dyin' by the gun we' give ya'." He turns around and stares me straight in the eyes, his grey eyes like a storm beginning to brew.

I stand up and salute him. "Understood sir." he salutes me back before handing me a registration form.

"Fill this out at home son and git' it back by tomorrow. Then and only then can you can consider yourself a soldier in America’s Army.


He said "Son, have you seen the world?

well what would you say, if I said that you could

just carry this gun, you'll even get paid"

And I said "that sounds pretty good

The End

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