I appreciated the April 3 article regarding Staff Sgt. Ty Carter, his work as an advocate for other service people, and the update on the action taken by our Legislature regarding our service members and veterans. I love to see our men and women receive acknowledgment for their service.
However, Carter did not “win” the Medal of Honor, and Sgt. 1st Class Leroy Petry and Capt. William Swenson are not two other recent “winners.” I abhor the use of the word “winner” for being honored for their selfless sacrifices that often result in a service member’s emotional and/or physical injury for doing what they’ve done.
I’ll wager that none of these men feel they are winners. They are recipients of high honors; bestowed medals of appreciation for their actions. They often face additional stress as recipients. They are not competitors running a race where a winner is declared.
It cheapens the meaning behind the awards when recipients are called “winners.” It doesn’t honor them for their service, sacrifices, and the selflessness of their actions and their service to our country and, by extension, their service to each and every one of us.