Thursday, January 13, 2011

Daniel Hernandez, Hero

Daniel Hernandez, hero

Of the many heroes from the awful tragedy of the Tuscon, Arizona shootings was one Daniel Hernandez.

Daniel Hernandez is an 20 year old intern  who had only been working for one week for Representative Gabby Giffords.  

Daniel is widely credited for saving Representative Giffords life by dashing through the hail of bullets from the madman to cradle Representative Giffords head and apply compresses to staunch the bleeding until medical help arrived.  

Last night at a memorial service in Arizona for the six victions of the Tuscon shootings, Daniel Hernandez was recognized by President Obama for his heroism.   Daniel showed incredible poise when he rose to speak he said while he appreciated the recognition he had to reject the term "hero".  He said simply "I am no hero" and then he eloquently spoke of the real heroism of the first responders, police and other civilians on the scene who helped to save lives.   When President Obama rose to speak he in turn rejected Daniel's rejection and rightly pointed out to the 26,000 audience that Daniel was a hero and probably saved Representative Gifford's life by his quick thinking actions.

People like Daniel Hernandez are the real heroes in our society.  Another hero was Patiricia Maisch.  This grandmother, although wounded, had the presence of mind to prevent the shooter from loading another clip of 31 rounds of ammunition into his automatic gun.  
Patricia Maisch, hero

It is with some irony that I note that Daniel Hernandez is an openly gay man.  With the recent repeal of the Don't Ask Don' t Tell law, Daniel's actions on that tragic Saturday morning last week reminds us that perhaps, just perhaps having a gay man in the foxhole next to us in combat does not deteriorate troop cohesion.  

In fact, I want this grandmom in the foxhole with me.  

Think of this.  Here is this gay man who is Hispanic and overweight.  How many more strikes can one have against him for not meeting the stereotype of the macho Marine guy?  

And the grandmom, Patricia Maisch who crawled across the ground, wounded to prevent the shooter from loading another clip of 31 rounds in his gun?  

It is time we leave stereotypes behind and accept the fact that everyone in our society contributes to the greatness of this country.  Straight, gay, men women, white, black and Hispanic.

We're all in this together.  

We are one.


  1. Well said. A great tribute to these two heroes!

  2. thank goodness for everyday heros.

  3. Such a tragic event. Thanks for posting this. I was unable to catch the event and this is good snippet of the heroism involved.

  4. Rick,
    David Hernandez is amazing. Only 20 years old and such poise and unaffected. It was a very emotional moment to see him thus honored.

  5. Spo,
    Everyday heroes like Daniel Hernandez are our real defense against terrorists. Not taking off shoes at the airport and confiscating toothpaste tubes. I'm glad this time the hero was gay. Daniel, with his selfless actions in probably saving Representative Gifford's life just removed another chink in the armor of homophobia.

  6. Thank you Alan. The real heroes are often unsung and they live among us.


Comments are always welcome except from SPAM bloggers. I answer all comments. Have a great day!