Category Archives: Heroes
On Friday, 35-year-old Jeremy Joseph Christian, of north Portland, Oregon, boarded a light rail MAX train in Northeast Portland. He apparently had a chip on his shoulder and, for no discernable reason, began berating two women, one of whom was wearing a hijab. He began ranting and shouting, telling them to “Get off the bus, and get out of the country because you don’t pay taxes here”. Fearing that his rants were escalating, at least three other passengers acted to try to calm Mr. Christian and protect the two women. Two of the three men are now dead, the third is in the hospital being treated for non-life-threatening injuries, and Mr. Christian is being held without bond in police custody on two counts of aggravated murder, one count of attempted murder, two counts of intimidation in the second degree and one count of possession of a restricted weapon…
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I love movies. When it comes to war movies, I’m seen many and some I really liked, but never want to watch again. Saving Private Ryan is one such movie.
When I heard of the Academy Award nominations for 2017, there were movies that caught my attention. Hacksaw Ridge was one such movie. It is categorized as a war movie, directed by Mel Gibson. In other movies he directed, Gibson likes to show the horror of reality. In The Passion, he showed spurting blood from the hands of Jesus as the nails were driven in. In Braveheart, Gibson did not shy away from showing the use of swords to cut off the legs of horses ridden by the English army. It brought their soldiers to the ground, making combat more equal.
A war movie directed by Gibson would have to be brutally bloody. However, the war itself is not the main theme in Hacksaw Ridge. The main theme is a man – a real man, a Pacifist, and his struggle to serve in the Army as a combat medic while staying committed to his faith.
I rented Hacksaw Ridge through On Demand and I watched. I watched again, and again. Desmond Doss captivated me. As a Pacifist, he was misunderstood. I can relate to that.
On April 1, 1942, Desmond Doss joined the United States Army. It was just after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor and Desmond wanted to serve his country – the United States, saving lives. He was 23-years old; a skinny native of Virginia with a southern drawl. In Desmond’s mind, God said, “If you love me, you won’t kill.”
When he voluntarily enlisted, he was assured that he would be assigned to a medic company and because of his Seventh Day Adventist belief in Saturday being the Sabbath, he was told that belief would be honored.
Instead, Desmond was assigned to an infantry rifle company. His commanding officers wanted to get rid of him. They intimidated him, and assigned him to extra duties. They even tried to court martial him for refusing a direct order to carry a rifle. But, they failed to toss him out, and he refused to leave.
His fellow soldiers ostracized and bullied him. Because he refused to touch a gun, they called him a coward. Desmond believed in the Golden Rule and never held a grudge. When the men got blisters on their feet, Desmond had a way of healing them. When they fainted from heat stroke, he was at their side with his own canteen. Read the rest of this entry
Then known as Cassius Clay, he competed in the 1960 Olympics and came home with a Gold Medal. However, I first remember paying him attention during his second fight with Sonny Liston. I lived in Chicago then, and there were stories about people who went to the theater to watch the fight live. It was an extra-long line waiting outside, and people were still waiting to buy tickets when the fight started.
People on the street started selling tickets to those in line so they could get inside. What the people outside did not know was that the people selling tickets had already seen the fight. Ali knocked Liston out in the first round.
The second time that I paid careful attention to Ali was when I was taken to a restaurant on the South Side of Chicago. Turned out it was owned and operated by Muslims. I enjoyed the food, and was given more of a surprise when Ali walked into the restaurant. I was so nervous meeting the Champ that my hands were shaking. Read the rest of this entry
article via clutchmagonline.com
The second annual “Daddy Daughter Dance” was held in Chicago over the weekend, and the event sponsored by the Chicago Police Department proved to be a success.
The event, which was held at the South Shore Cultural Center, matched up Chicago police officers with girls who don’t have fathers in their lives. Also in attendance were officers and their own daughters.
“After last year’s event, we had several officers and the young ladies that they escorted, they kept up with one another and it really bridged a gap,” said Sgt. Kimberly Woods. “It let the girls know that officers are just people too and we dance, and we dance funny like your dads do.”
The Chicago Police Department and the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives planned the dance to encourage healthy relationships between daughters and their fathers.
In general, when the media reports cops who do something kind, it’s towards animals. It’s not often, or often enough, that we read stories about law enforcement doing something kind for people. So, I thought I’d share this uplifting story. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department posted the story on their Facebook page on May 13, 2016.
Officer Tim Purdy is with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg, North Carolina Police Department. An unnamed teen student had left school and may have been suicidal. The teen has a history of violent behavior due to a neuro-development disorder.
According to Yahoo news, when Officer Purdy spotted the student, he approached him, sat with him on the concrete and tried to connect with him. At one point, Purdy even made the teen laugh. Read the rest of this entry
May he rest in peace.
Julian Bond, a civil rights leader and former board chairman of the NAACP, has died. He was 75.
Bond died Saturday night after a brief illness in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, which he served as founding president in the 1970s.
The Tennessee native was on the forefront of the 1960s civil rights movement, and was among activists who protested for equal rights for African-Americans.
“With Julian’s passing, the country has lost one of its most passionate and eloquent voices for the cause of justice,” said Morris Dees, co-founder of the SPLU, a legal advocacy group that specializes in civil rights.
Bond’s civil rights activism went beyond the United States.
In 1985, police arrested him outside the South African Embassy, where he was protesting against apartheid, the…
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In September 2015, Jamal Rutledge was being booked on charges of violation of probation for criminal mischief and burglary. Officer Franklin Foulks of the Fort Lauderdale Police was doing the booking when he suddenly collapsed. Being handcuffed behind his back, the only thing that Jamal could do was yell for help and kick the door to alert nearby officers.
Sergeant Todd Bunin heard Jamal’s cries for help. He saw Officer Foulks clenching his chest. Bunin notified police dispatch to send help. Officers Robert Norvis and Raymond Ketchmark overheard Bunin’s radio transmissions and immediately responded to assist. Norvis removed Foulks’ police gear and cut off his shirt. Ketchmark got a nearby Automated External Defibrillator to stimulate Officer Foulks’ heart.
Fire rescue arrived and transported Foulks to Broward Health Medical Center.
NBC Miami reports;
“ Fort Lauderdale Police say that the attending medical staff noted that the immediate actions by Rutledge, along with the quick response by nearby officers, saved Foulks’ life.”
Rutledge, Bunin and Ketchmark and Norvis will be honored publicly on Januray 21st at 6 p.m. at the next Fort Lauderdale Commission Meeting. Read the rest of this entry
Veterans Day is an official United States holiday that honors people who have served in the armed forces. It coincides with the holidays celebrated in other parts of the world that mark the end of hostilities of World War I.
To honor our veterans and active duty personnel, some restaurants provide free meals. Some of these Veterans Day free meals are nationwide but some are only at participating locations.
The below is a partial list of restaurants honoring our veterans and those on active duty. Read the rest of this entry
Good job, Richard Martinez and Peter Rodger.
You might remember the names, or they might sound familiar. In May 2014, Christopher Martinez was killed by Elliot Roger in a spree that took the lives of 6 others and wounded 13. Family members of Isla Vista killer, Elliot Rodger, had reported their concerns to Santa Barbara law enforcement after the 22-year-old posted videos of himself threatening violence online. In response, Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s deputies visited Rodger’s apartment just three weeks before the murders and performed a police procedure known as a “welfare check.” The deputies found Elliot to be polite and amenable.
The deputies did not know then that Elliot legally owned three handguns, nor had they viewed the threatening videos that Elliot made.
Richard Martinez, Christopher’s dad, was very vocal about gun violence, saying:
“Chris died because of craven, irresponsible politicians and the NRA. They talk about gun rights. What about Chris’ right to live? When will this insanity stop? When will enough people say stop this madness? We should say to ourselves, not one more.”
68-year old Bob King was at Vestal Baptist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee last Saturday. His wife went inside the church and took the car keys with her.
It was 91 degrees outside that day. King told ABC News that they had trouble with the door of the car since purchasing it. He couldn’t get the door open to get out, and without the keys, he could neither start the car to turn on the air conditioning. King has undergone numerous cancer treatments suffered from two strokes in the past six months. Read the rest of this entry
Peter Rodger’s son, Elliot, went on a shooting spree, taking the lives of 6 people on May 24, 2014. Elliot wrote angry pieces and taped YouTube videos talking about violence, murder, and his hatred of blonde White women for rejecting him. Among those Elliot killed was 20-year old Christopher Martinez.
Christopher’s dad, Richard, was very vocal about gun violence. Read the rest of this entry
You were right. I needed tissues.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia
Read an amazing account of incredible sacrifice during World War 2 involving simple towns people.
Around this time each year, Memorial Day, I am reminded of a story that I once heard. Though the exactness of it I cannot confirm, I am assured its basis is quite factual, and its message definitely deserves to be retold.
The story is of a man, Andrew, who was known all his life for selfless sacrifice and good works. He always stood in defense of the defenseless, and toiled without tiring, standing up for the downtrodden and underprivileged. As he grew old, and people tried to honor him for his well-lived life of service, he was reluctant to accept the praise and attention that his community desired to heap upon him. It was then, for the first time, that he told a story that had burned deep in his heart and…
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This is great!! Thanks for sharing it.
A 911 call was made in Gibson County, Illinois, on a November morning in 1995 about a child who had been left under a pine tree at a cemetery…
Police and firefighters rushed to the reported scene, but found nothing.
Local firefighter Charlie Heflin decided to look in a different cemetery.
He didn’t find anything there either, and had already began walking back to his car when he had a hunch to check one more spot.
Heflin told WFIE:
“I heard a little whimper when I got close to the tree. I dug down inside this real huge pine tree and found her.”
The baby girl was on the verge of death, covered in blood and leaves in the freezing weather. Her umbilical cord was still attached.
“I handed her off to the paramedics and I didn’t see her since.”
The child was adopted five days later by Bonnie and Greg…
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“I’ve never seen an alien. Have you ever seen an alien?”
The character, Mick Canales, had lost both of his legs. He believed that he could no longer be a soldier, which was something he had been all of his adult life. He didn’t want to cooperate in physical therapy. He was abrupt and rude. Then something happened. His physical therapist was told to get off the mountain because aliens had landed. The earth was under attack.
“I’ve never seen an alien. Have you ever seen an alien? With that line by Lieutenant Colonel Mick Canales, I realized that the character was returning to the soldier he thought that he could no longer be.
The movie is Battleship. I like science fiction movies and years ago when my son was in junior high, we played the game. I wanted to see the movie without knowing its plot nor who was starring. It had to be my kind of movie.
When the character of Lieutenant Colonel Mick Canales was introduced, I thought it could not be special effects. The actor had to be a real amputee and not just a real amputee, but also a military man. At the end when the credits rolled, I watched for the name of the actor. His real name is Gregory D. Gadson. Well, it’s more than that. He is actually Colonel Gregory D. Gadson. Read the rest of this entry
In 2013, a federal Judge cited the Loving case in his ruling when striking down Virginia’s same-sex marriage ban. The Loving case has become the foundation in which other courts are striking down bans against same-sex marriage. How did it come about?
Loving — The last name is so appropriate.
In 1957, Richard Loving and Mildred Jeter married. They met and lived in Central Point, Virginia, but married in Washington, D.C. because in Virginia, it was illegal to marry a person of another race. Richard, White, and Mildred, “colored,” fell in love at first sight.
At about 4 a.m. one morning, the local police came to their house and arrested them. It wasn’t just the law against interracial marriage that the police was going to arrest the Lovings for violating. They were hoping to catch them in the act of making love, because there was also law against interracial sex.
Mildred showed the police their marriage certificate, but that marriage certificate became evidence for the criminal charge of “cohabiting as man and wife, against the peace and dignity of the Commonwealth.”
On January 6, 1959, the Loving’s pled guilty. The law they were charged with violating was passed in Virginia in 1924. It was the Act for the Preservation of Racial Integrity. That law set forth that any trace of nonwhite ancestry (the infamous “one drop” rule) defined someone as ineligible to marry anyone defined as white.
The court found the Loving’s guilty and sentenced each to one year in prison, but suspended sentencing for 25 years if they moved out of Virginia.
They moved to Washington, D.C. and could only return to Virginia separately, not together, to see their families. The Loving’s were unhappy in D.C. and in 1964, Mildred wrote to Attorney General Robert Kennedy. He referred her to the ACLU. Two attorneys with no prior experience, but believers in equality and the constitution, went to work.
Thanks so much Horty for your fantastic work!
~~January 18, 2014~~
More than 45 years after his death and 50 years after his historic “I Have a Dream” speech, Martin Luther King Jr.‘s stirring words and writings remain as relevant and inspiring today as they were when he lived.
Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) was an American pastor, activist, humanitarian, and leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement. He is best known for his role in the advancement of civil rights using nonviolent civil disobedience based on his Christian beliefs.
Born Michael King, his father changed his name in honor of German reformer Martin Luther. A Baptist minister, King became a civil rights activist early in his career. He led the 1955 Montgomery Bus Boycott and helped found the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in 1957, serving as its first president. With the SCLC, King led an…
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In the 30th annual Celebration of the Life and Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the University of Utah is holding public discussions. This year’s theme is “Beneath the Hoodie: A Look at Racial Profiling in America.”
On Jan. 21, Jennifer Napier-Pearce of the Salt Lake Tribune will lead a panel discussion at the university about the damaging effects of racial profiling and how to combat it. Sybrina Fulton will kick off that discussion.
Sybrina Fulton is the mother of Trayvon Martin who, on February 26, 2012, was profiled, followed, and killed by George Zimmerman. In July 2013, a jury of 6 women found Zimmerman not guilty of 2nd degree murder neither manslaughter.
The best to Sybrina Fulton in her work as an advocate.
David Douglas, 43, is in jail on a $4 million bond because of an observant employee.
Reading this story reminded me of the movie, “The Call.” I’ve watched that movie at least 4 times. It has a kidnapping with a bad ending, and a kidnapping with a good ending. The one with the good ending is because of a 911 operator who listened to the recording of a call, and hearing a sound, remembered that sound when she went to the house that the police had visited, but did not find the kidnapper neither his victim. Halle Berry plays the character Jordan Turner, the 911 operator.
Roxanna Ramirez is a real life Jordan Turner. Read the rest of this entry
On May 6, 2013, Charles Ramsey helped three women and a child escape a Cleveland house. Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight, and Amanda Berry were kidnapped and held captive in that house, with Berry having been held captive for 10 years, giving birth to a child fathered by her kidnapper.
“What you saw on TV doesn’t even begin to tell the story,” Ramsey said. Now, Ramsey gets a chance to put the entire story in writing. Read the rest of this entry