"It profits me but little that a vigilant authority always protects the tranquillity of my pleasures and constantly averts all dangers from my path, without my care or concern, if this same authority is the absolute master of my liberty and my life."

--Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Dick Winters

The death of Dick Winters at 92 last week was a great loss.   Winters, the leader of "Easy Company" in the 101st Airborne in World War II that was the focus of the book and miniseries Band of Brothers, was a true American hero.   His obituary his here; the excerpt below particularly touched me:
Winters talked about his view of leadership for an August 2004 article in American History Magazine:

"If you can," he wrote, "find that peace within yourself, that peace and quiet and confidence that you can pass on to others, so that they know that you are honest and you are fair and will help them, no matter what, when the chips are down."

When people asked whether he was a hero, he echoed the words of his World War II buddy, Mike Ranney: "No, but I served in a company of heroes."

"He was a good man, a very good man," Guarnere said. "I would follow him to hell and back. So would the men from E Company."
Here he is in an interview talking about the surrender of a German officer at the end of the war:

A patriot and a gentleman.  RIP.  

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