The term hero is thrown around quite easily these days.
Many of us think our fathers are the greatest but I had no idea mine was a real hero until I had a conversation with a man that told me "you're Dad saved my life in Vietnam and without him, I wouldn't be here talking to you."
You see, Nam or the Army wasn't talked about in our house-EVER! I didn't even know my Dad was there until I was quite older. Growing up, I never understood why he couldn't sleep at night and why he had all those violent nightmares.
After years of healing and his reunion with many of the men in his unit, my Dad started to embrace and talk about his experiences. Although he never talks in great detail, he is proud to have served our country and it is nice to see perfect strangers come up to him and thank him for serving so many years later.
Yes, I am proud that my father was a Bronze Star recipient, but I am more proud that he made the time to hide his pain all these years and became a great father to me and my sister. And I'm even more proud that he is raising my 3-year old son Anthony.
Now that I've shared my story about how my dad, it's time for you to tell us why your dad is awesome, too! All you have to do is write up a short essay about why your dad is the coolest and share a picture to Celebrate@nwi.com for the NWI Communities Father's Day Contest. We've lined up some great prizes, including four tickets to the Monday, Aug. 18 Chicago White Sox game versus the Baltimore Orioles, so start writing!
- Essays should be approximately 200 words
- Don’t forget to add your names, cities you live in, email address and contact number
- Be sure to also send us a photo of you and your dad
- Email entries to Celebrate@nwi.com
- All entries are due by June 9 at 5 p.m.