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Tuesday, November 4, 2008

While you're at it, don't forget to blink or breathe

After 5 consecutive hours today (not to mention the months that came before today) of Presidential campaign and voting coverage, NPR ran a public service announcement stating, "Don't forget to vote!"

I don't know how anybody listening to the radio for even 15 minutes today could possibly have forgotten that today was the day.

Taken w/ my camera phone even after they said there were no pictures allowed! What? It's a free country!

Public radio redeemed itself after the silly reminder with today's guest on one of my favorite (and always moving) shows, The Story:

On the day when voters are choosing a new leader, this is one story that's certain to inspire. Army Capt. Ivan Castro was on a rooftop in Iraq trying to secure a safer position for his unit when he was attacked by mortar rounds. Two soldiers under his command died in that attack, and Ivan sustained life-threatening injuries.

After months of rehab and dozens of surgeries, Ivan was finally able to get out of bed and start walking on his own. But he had one injury that could not be fixed: Ivan lost his sight. But blindness has not stopped Ivan Castro from achieving his goals. He has found way to continue to serve and lead despite his injury. He talks with Dick Gordon about how he made the decision to continue serving the nation as an officer in the Army's Special Forces.

About halfway through the interview, Captain Castro described what happened when he woke up in the hospital: His wife whispered in his ear that he was safe, but that two of his soldiers were lost in the attack. His doctor explained his injuries, and that his blindness would be permanent. He demanded another doctor's opinion. The second doctor told him the same thing, that his optic nerve had been damaged beyond repair and that he was now blind. Permanently. Then, he demanded a third doctor from a completely different hospital take over his case. The third doctor came to the same conclusion.

Captain Castro and his wife held each other and cried; she for her husband's injuries and he for the friends he lost in the attack. He said all he wanted to do after that was to go after the third doctor and "tear him apart"...

...for making his wife cry.

That's when I started to cry, too. 


Melissa said...

And for Captain Castro's sake...I so hope this country gets the change it so desperately needs.

Spammon said...

I have nothing but respect for the troops serving our country. One of my close friends has already served 2 terms and I never get tired of hearing his stories he has. I just wish his, Captain Castro and other stories like them were told more by the media. I think more people would show more respect for them.

lindsEy said...

I read the story and loved it...

and now I'm wondering something about your phone pic. See here in little podunk Utah we have electronic voting booths, aren't you in a bustling city?!!?

House of Jules said...

@Melissa: Him and so many others just like him...

@Spammon: I agree wholeheartedly!

@Linds: My polling place had both electronic and the scan-tron type sheets, and we could take our pick. I just went with whichever one was available first!