Monday, June 6, 2011

Unsung Heroes

A little late on this post, I wanted to have it up for the Memorial Day holiday as we remember our US soldiers serving around the world and veterans, and the sacrifices they have made for their country.  They deserve all the praise we can give them for what they do.

I can't tell you how many times along this trip I've run into sticky situations.  Sometimes it's something major like popping my tires in Arkansas.  Some situations aren't as bad, but they are a cause for worry nonetheless.  As in, when I'm lost downtown somewhere or if I just need for there to be a gas station open late at night.  I am so thankful to those who were there and could provide me with directions or at least let me know where I could find civilization.  Even people on the street who could tell me where things were probably saved me much time and money trying to find things myself.  I wonder how many times a convenient store cashier or a stranger on the street has saved a life without realizing it?  It taught me a valuable lesson, if it's within reason and your ability, be willing to help a stranger, especially if it's something as simple as directions and do it with enthusiasm.

Brian Carderelli
One hero of mine who I haven't recognized as such before now is Brian Carderelli.  Unfortunately, while I considered him a friend, I didn't have the opportunity to get to know him as well as I should have enough to call him a close friend.  Brian was killed in Afghanistan close to a year ago when the group he was with was attacked by Afghan/Pakistan militants.  Brian was not a soldier, he was a photographer trying to show the beauty of Afghanistan and that it is not a country completely defined by war. He was there voluntarily.  I didn't realize how much my interactions with him impacted my life until he had died.  Suddenly, I had a rushing flood of memories come back to me of all the times we had hung out, played rugby and paintball together, and when I saw him at Covenant Church.  All of the things said about him in the newspaper and at his memorial service were perfectly in line with the person I knew him to be.  He's a hero of mine b/c if ever I think this trip, or the things I do in life are 'radical' in faith, cool, or badass....I think about Brian, how radical in his faith, how courageous he was to live in a war torn country for a year (and planned to stay longer).  He is a true hero, a light into the world which is a lesser place without him.  I'd be lucky to live with a mustard seed amount of faith that he had.  He lived more of a life in 26 years than most ever do.  Since his death I've pondered the concept of legacy, what is it we want to leave behind?  I hope to encourage you all to ponder this as well.  Thank you Brian for the times we had, and thank you for shining your light.


  1. Hey Brother!
    Thanks for posting this. I completely agree with you. Brian has left an amazing legacy behind, and I'm humbled to call him a friend. I can't wait to see him again!.. I also can't wait to see you again, homie! We are continuing to pray for you.

  2. Perhaps each of us has an impact on many of those around us that we do not realize. By the grace of God, it will be for good. Brian's life and death will continue to be an inspiration to many for years to come. Thanks for sharing this.