by Derek Coverly
My father is a hero to me.
While many ran from war; my father ran to it.
Although a young lad, he knew he could do it.
He found himself in the midst of the Vietnam War.
Fighting to stay alive and maybe come home once more.
So many things he has seen; I will never know.
Till this day many thoughts will haunt him so.
Forced to become a grown man in young boys skin,
He fought for our country, doing what was asked of him.
To kill or be killed was the battle cry.
Learning to pull the trigger in the blink of an eye.
Guns, mortars, violence and bloodshed each day.
How does a soldier put these memories at bay?
The sounds and cries of war engraved in his mind,
To me it means freedom, to him those left behind.
The things he had to do to survive;
My mind can not fathom how he's alive.
Upon his arrival to the states back home;
Soldiers were spat upon and mocked as they felt all alone.
Many say they did not agree with the war at hand,
People need to respect the soldier who fought to protect our land.
I look at my father and may never understand;
Everything he had to do to follow his chain of command.
I remember when I was a child, he would doze off to sleep.
We dare not touch him to wake him, unless you could leap.
He would immediately swing like he was under attack,
It was as though memories of Nam were to come back.
He never spoke much about everything he did see.
He has held much of it in for years as a way to protect me.
My father is indeed a Hero to me.
He has served and protected our country and our family.
My father, I admire you and will love you always.
You are an Unsung Hero to this country but to me you were brave.
So although an Unsung Hero to this country you may be,
You are first my Father and a true Hero to me.