Opinion

Gibbons and those like him the true heroes

The word “hero” is tossed around all too freely these days in our popular culture.

Someone hits a home run or scores a touchdown and we label them a hero. Maybe even more mystifyingly, someone waves a protest sign and exercises his God-given right to dissent, and they’re consdered a hero by others who share the same point of view.

For our money, though, the true hero is the one who sacrifices everythng to protect our right to disagree and score touchdowns.

Such a person is Port Orchard native Devon Gibbons.

Gibbons, 19, was serving in Taji, Iraq, on April 11 when a roadside bomb exploded near a vehicle in which he was driving. Three other soliders with him were killed in the assault and Gibbons was severely injured, suffering a broken back, third-degree burns over 90 percent of his body and the loss of both legs.

He is currently hospitalized near San Antonio, Texas, and doctors do not expect him to survive his injuries.

The 2005 South Kitsap High School graduate, like every other member of the armed forces, volunteered to serve knowing full well he might be injured or killed defending our right to live our lives in comfort and free from fear. From where we sit, that makes Gibbons — and every one of those he served alongside — more heroic than a stadium full of protestors who air their opinions and then go home at night to sleep in their own bed.

If prayer’s your thing, be sure to say one tonight for Devon Gibbons and all of those serving in harm’s way. If not, find some other way to show your gratitude for their sacrifice.

It’s the very least we can all do.

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