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  Commentary December 10th, 2009

The Editor 

Mr PennywhistleOf Legends and Heroes and Such . . .

We’ve been writing quite a bit lately about legendary folks, heroes . . . people who have met difficult tests and passed, with flying colors.

A couple of random thoughts:

The Heisman Trophy Award will be coming up in a few days and there is a major surprise in the offing . . . and has already taken place. Seldom is a lineman nominated for a Heisman. This is usually running back, quarterback, or wide receiver territory.

In this case, however, the nomination is more than warranted. A fine young man, King Ndamukong Suh, has been tearing up the record books set for offensive linemen.

He is the first defensive player to earn an invitation to New York since Charles Woodson — the only defender to win — in 1997. Suh joins 19 defenders before him to place among the top five. No defensive lineman has won the award. The most recent finalist, Miami's Warren Sapp in 1994, finished sixth.

Johnny Rodgers, the 1972 winner from Nebraska as a wingback, can't argue. “He's so dominant that he takes over a game in the way an offensive player does,” Rodgers said. “He keeps us in games. He can make that much of a difference in every area.”

Suh, in a statement released by Nebraska, said he was humbled by the honor. According to coach Bo Pelini, Suh is “special.”

“It is good to see that the Heisman voters have recognized the true impact a dominant defensive lineman like Suh can have on a football game,”
Bo Pelini said.

Suh leads Nebraska defensively with 82 tackles and 12 sacks. He served as a disruptive force and consistently changed the dynamic of games, coaches said throughout this season.

We will see what happens.
•••••
Many of our recent stories had to do with things military . . . and war. The inspiring story of Livia Krancberg, who survived the horrors of Auschwitz and the Holocaust, the little known background story on the Enola Gay’s pilot and the A-Bomb, the heroic story of Father Aquinas Thomas Colgan and “The Battle of Colgan Woods,” the story of the brave pilots “Inside the Doolittle Mission,” and, most recently, last week’s remembrance of Pearl Harbor by local pilot, veteran and Pearl Harbor survivor, Bill Blackwell.

All well and good . . . but we had hoped to get away from military stories and war. We don’t want to be typecast as a military journal or war history papers. But there are just so many great stories out there, many of which are sent to us by our readers.

Case in point: We were contacted by a local reader who told us of a friend of his who was a member of the Danish Resistance during WWII when the Nazis occupied Denmark. It was all there, espionage, spy training, torture, imprisonment, suffering, and, ultimately, freedom, redemption and recognition.

I was sent a copy of the man’s memoirs. No way could I not print this story! Look for it in next week’s issue and be prepared to relive some dangerous, exciting, often painful, memories of WWII.

See what this man had to go through, what he and his family endured, as well as his nation. And see what the people of Denmark did, together, to overcome the occupation of Nazi Germany.

One gets goose bumps.

We have met the author and are proud to have shaken his hand. It’s a great, inspiring read!

 

 

 

 

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