It's a great essay Celia, thanks for sharing it with us.
The Real Meaning of a Hero
By Celia Palardy
By Celia Palardy
There is a wooden old box above the TV. That box holds a black and white picture, two flags, and six medals. Those didn’t come from a contest; they came from the blood sweat and tears from being a marine in World War II. To get those you had to be selfless, strong with conviction, courageous, and dedicated. The only person who is all of this is Papa or my grandpa. Born in the city of Pawtucket he entered the marines at age 19. By entering the marines Papa had to leave his six other siblings behind. The other two had joined him in the war, one fighting and one as a nurse. After the war Papa married a wonderful women named Rita Joyal. They had six wonderful children that now take care of him now in his home in Smithfield Rhode Island. Papa’s wife had passed away when he was 58 years old.
Being selfless doesn’t take a lot of work. Papa definitely was selfless being on Imo Jima. One time a plane had landed there for help. And the marines and Papa helped them get back in the air. He also looked after all the injured soldiers he came upon. Papa risked his life to save the whole country. Now if that isn’t selfless then I don’t know what is.
Having a strong conviction is something Papa is very strong in. He has to deal with two obstacles in his life. They are diabetes and being legally blind. He has always believed that his sight will come back and he won’t have to deal with this obstacle any more. But until that day comes along he has all these “toys”. The “toys” are all these machines that he has. There is a special magnifier, a computer that magnifies things, and some glasses. Even with all of the help he still doesn’t lose faith in getting his site back.
Papa had to be very courageous to enter World War II. If he wasn’t then he wouldn’t have put his life in danger. At one point during the war Papa had felt something drip down his leg. He was about to get rid of his canteen when he found a bullet laying in there. He had come that close to being hit. He certainly was very lucky. Entering the war he was willing to give his life for his family and the country. He was very lucky to come out of the war alive. That just shows how courageous my hero was to put his life in danger for something he loves.
The last reason why Papa is my hero is because he is dedicated. Being a Marine meant that he had to help his fellow marines in all situations. He couldn’t back out of the war and leave everyone else without him to help out. He couldn’t cower after that bullet to the canteen, he had to keep going and not give up. He also is dedicated to his family. Everyday I get home I am always greeted by “Hello”. It is a weird way of saying it but that is dedication to want to say hi everyday.
Going back to that wooden box with the six medals; it is not the medals and fame that make a hero. It is someone who is selfless, someone with strong conviction, courageous, and dedicated. Papa is truly my hero that I love and will always look up to. Papa said that in “World War II the real heroes didn’t come back” but I don’t believe that.