Monday, February 11, 2013

R.I.P. CSM Plumley – You are a Hero

So I received an email a while back about the funeral for CSM Basil Plumley, veteran of three wars (WW II, Korea & Vietnam), and one of the main characters of a favorite book and film We Were Soldiers Once, and Young written by Lt. Gen. Hal Moore and Joe Galloway. We Were Soldiers details the Battle of the Ia Drang Valley in Vietnam, the first full scale use of American Air Cavalry or Air Mobile troops in modern warfare, Custer’s old 7th to be exact. Sam Elliott plays the role of SGM Plumley in the film and does a good job in his portrayal, it’s his kind of role.
Several thoughts went through my mind as I watched the vid. clip.
  • Since the funeral was just on the 10th of Oct 2012 why didn’t the MSM report his passing as it does that of so many sports and entertainment celebrities? 
  • Sam Elliott is pictured in the clip escorting who I can only assume is a daughter of SGM Plumley. It’s obvious that he was there as a token of respect for the man and his character. Well done, Sam Elliott.
  • Third and last, why am I so attracted to this particular book & film?
I suppose therein lies my true pursuit of understanding. Probably my fascination with this is multi-fold.
  • I AM a product of the Vietnam Era & served in the National Guard following college graduation rather than being drafted. Probably the right decision at the time but one I regret occasionally, too.
  • CSM Plumley and then Lt Col Moore were HEROES, and I’ve always believed in heroes. And they were heroes only because they did what they were called to do and did it well. I see being heroic as answering duties call, regardless the cost. Nothing more.
  • Finally, I guess the fallout from the era, in terms of social issues both conservative and liberal, continues to have a tremendous cost on our Nation. And I bemoan the rancor and divisiveness that proceeds from it. As an early “boomer” I was blessed to enjoy the slow and languid lifestyle of most of the 50’s, the common courtesy towards one another and the respect for “the American Dream” that was prevalent for that short time. Unfortunately we continue to do ourselves an injustice in how we live our lives today.
Godspeed Sergeant Major


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