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Perspective (sorry, out of topic, but just too relevant to ignore)



In a message dated 2/22/01 8:32:43 AM US Eastern Standard Time,
Sorianod@hq.hqusareur.army.mil writes:

<< A friend sent this note.  I think this puts things into perspective for
 mainstream America...

 On 18 February 2001, while racing for fame and fortune, Dale Earnhardt
 died in the last lap of the Daytona 500.  It was surely a tragedy for
 his family, friends and fans.  He was 49 years old with grown children,
 one, which was in the race.  I am new to the NASCAR culture so much of
 what I know has come from the newspaper and TV.  He was a winner and
 earned everything he had.  This included more than "$41 million in
 winnings and ten times that from endorsements and souvenir sales".  He
 had a beautiful home and a private jet.  He drove the most sophisticated
 cars allowed and every part was inspected and replaced as soon as there
 was any evidence of wear.  This is normally fully funded by the car and
 team sponsors.  Today, there is no TV station that does not constantly
 remind us of his tragic end and the radio already has a song of tribute
 to this winning driver.  Nothing should be taken away from this man, he
 was a professional and the best in his profession.  He was in a very
 dangerous business but the rewards were great.

 Two weeks ago seven U.S. Army soldiers died in a training accident
 when two UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters collided during night maneuvers in
 Hawaii.  The soldiers were all in their twenties, pilots, crewchiefs
 and infantrymen.  Most of them lived in sub-standard housing.  If you add
 their actual duty hours (in the field, deployed) they probably earn
 something close to minimum wage.  The aircraft they were in were
 between 15 and 20 years old.  Many times parts were not available to keep
 them
 in good shape due to funding.  They were involved in the extremely
 dangerous business of flying in the Kuhuku mountains at night.  It only
 gets worse when the weather moves in as it did that night.  Most times
 no one is there with a yellow or red flag to slow things down when it
 gets critical.  Their children where mostly toddlers who will lose all
 memory of who "Daddy" was as they grow up.  They died training to
 defend our freedom.

 I take nothing away from Dale Earnhardt but ask you to perform this
 simple test.  Ask any of your friends if they know who was the NASCAR
 driver killed on 18 February 2001.  Then ask them if they can name one
 of the seven soldiers who died in Hawaii two weeks ago.

 18 February 2001, Dale Earnhardt died driving for fame and glory at
 the Daytona 500.  The nation mourns.  Seven soldiers died training to
 protect our freedom.  No one can remember their names and most don't
 even remember the incident.  >>






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