Silent heroes

  • By Jackson Holtz Herald Writer
  • Monday, July 4, 2011 12:01am
  • Life

Today’s Independence Day celebrations wouldn’t be complete without a nod to the men and women in uniform.

These people, many of whom live and work at Naval Station Everett, are well deserving of a big thank you.

Now, a Florida man has created a way for the people in uniform to feel lik

e the heroes that they are.

“It’s easy on July 4th to take freedom for granted,” author Rick Schoenfeld said. “I thank God that I live in America. That’s where I want to be.”

Freedom comes at a high price, often the lives of military service people fighting overseas, Schoenfeld said.

Schoenfeld, 46, hopes his “The Original Silent Heroes Autograph Book” will encourage children to collect autographs from soldiers, airmen, sailors, Marines and others who serve.

“When we talk about silent heroes, we talk about people who don’t get the credit they deserve,” he said.

After watching kids swarm professional athletes seeking autographs, Schoenfeld decided the same respect and awe should be given to soldiers and sailors.

The journal provides the excuse for kids to approach men and women in uniform.

By coaching children to put a smile on their faces and use “please” and “thank you” — even if the autograph is declined — the end result is an interaction that serves two purposes: The kids feel good and the person signing the autograph likely is left beaming.

“It’s a lot of fun,” Schoenfeld said. “It’s a really good feeling, once they do it one time, they want to run and find the next soldier to do it.”

Proceeds from book sales go to a number of military support organizations. Kids also can register their book online at www.silentheroesautographbook.com, where it’s available for purchase.

The book costs $12.95 and comes with a pen.

Jackson Holtz: 425-339-3447; jholtz@heraldnet.com.

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