Thursday, November 12, 2009

In awe

Definition of a hero: one who puts the well being of others far ahead of his or her own needs. At least, that's one definition.

By any you choose, though, Cpl William Kerr is a hero. This line from a story about the royal visit is simply amazing:

Cpl. William Kerr was among a group of Canadian soldiers on foot patrol just over a year ago in Afghanistan's Zhari-Panjwaii district. There had been a skirmish between the Canadians and Taliban in the area a few weeks earlier, and the soldiers were going from one village hut to the next, searching for Taliban observation points. Kerr was the fifth man through the doorway of the last hut the group was to clear, and as he turned to get in position, an IED detonated under him.

As a result of the explosion, Kerr lost both legs above the knee, as well as his left arm just below the elbow.

A year later, he talks about his good fortune: "I found out that the reason everybody survived in the room was that I was standing on top of it when it went off," he says. "If I were a metre to the left or a metre to the right, we all would have been dead.

"Five guys got to walk out because of me. That's how I look at it. That's how I try to keep myself motivated." [Babbler's bold]

Cpl Kerr, you're not motivating only yourself. You're inspiring others with your example.


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