Cut-Outs from the Sunday Sun

25 Feb

I’ve seen plenty of them, believe me… especially in guys’ garages. I, myself, like to read it all the way through while striving to find the best story that is most worthy of being snipped out & shared with people, such as this one I found from last Sunday’s Toronto Sunday Sun. FYI ~ I did remove the Sunday girl of the day – but only to cover up a horrid looking mark on someone’s door (haha).

Anyhoo, here is article I am typing out in full today to get some practise in data entry, seeing as how my capabilities still lie mostly there, for if I leave my arm flat-out on the table, I really have not much of a problem physically, so I best be making full use of my talents, wouldn’t you say?

HONOURING CANADIAN TROOPS IN LIFE, NOT IN DEATH

by Mercedes Stephenson

I will never forget the young Canadian medic who sat across from me in a light armoured vehicle (LAV) barely more than a year ago as we rumbled across the Afghan countryside.

He was “kitted out”, as soldiers say, like the Michelin man.

Every free inch of space on his torso was covered in medical supplies.

He was carrying so much stuff you could barely see his uniform on the top half of his body.

There was an important reason for every single item. A lifesaving reason.

Scissors, he explained, to cut through the tough fabric of uniforms to get to deadly wounds quickly; large tubes designed to be shovedf into collapsed and bleeding lungs after an IED inflicts the horrific injuries on a body; and tourniquets (never used in Canada but always in Afghanistan) to stop the bleeding from lost legs and arms.

Tourniquets swayed between us as we sat across from each other. They hung from a long metal beams running the length of the LAV, ready to be used at a moment’s notice.

Literally as in-your-face reminder of the constant danger that lurks on these roads.

As he explained the purpose of each piece of equipment to me, it was clear his sophistacted and extensive medical knowledge would have made many a Canadian emergency room doctor jealous. This extraordinary young man had probably treat more traumatic injuries, and more severe injuries, than some ERs see.

Capable hands

It was frankly reassuring to be in the presence of such capable and healing hands knowing we were in such a high-risk situation. Solideriers love and protect their medics, and after spending time with this extraordinary young man, I could appreciate why on more than a cold intellectual level.

His emotional maturity and depth was humbling and moving. Sitting across from someone several years younger than tyou but more than a thousand times braver has a way of putting your own piddly accomplishments in perspective.

His intensivty, compassion and personal sense of responsiblity, tempered (PAUSE, I’m soooo tired because I’m speed-typing this for the very 1st stab in a long time – no pun intended here, folks) with his tremendous professionallism and street smarts, were an incredibla combination and we are fortunate to have it in abundance i Canadian troops.

When he recalled past victories and the agony of  defeat as he fought to save lives in the mud and blood, the realization I was sitting across from someone who absolutely deserved to be described as a hero was clear.

Like most heroes, he would tell you that he is not one. That he just did his job. That he wishes he could have done it better and saved more people. Because that’s what he told me.

Canadian medics don’t just save Canadian lives. They regularly rescue Afghan civilians and even treat injured Taliban on the battlefield.

Unmatched humanity

The moral fortitude of people fresh from battle able to treat a foe with a humanity they would never extend to our soldiers under the same conditions speaks volumes of the kind of people who wear our uniform.

A year ago, I sat in the back of a LAV with a group of fierce and determined Canadian soldiers from the Calgary Highlanders and Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry.

They risked their lives to protect mine. They put on the uniform to risk their lives to protect yours too – this entire country as a matter of act. Yet so rarely do we talk about the peo9ple prepared to lay their lives down for yours.

I azskwed a few of them that day for their opinion of media coverage of the war. They told me they were bothered by the focus on how people died, rather than how they lived. Many a Canadian soldier had saved a life in the day, before theirs was taken, yet it was never mentioned on the 11 p.m. news.

It is time this country honoured our soldiers by how they live and what they do – like that incredible young medic – not just the way they die.

(finito in 9 minutoes, with mega errors – but it’s worth publishing right away 😉

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2 Responses to “Cut-Outs from the Sunday Sun”

  1. thelightningphoenix February 25, 2011 at 7:50 pm #

    Hah! I’m glad you noticed that, folks!
    I purposely mispelled practise… tee hee 😉

    I’m superseedinem in effing up, wut can I say 😛

  2. johnrailtime February 25, 2011 at 9:11 pm #

    to serve…. to protect……?

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