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Independence Day - Rivalry Style

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Allow me to present to you, two fine young men who have truly sacrificed for our freedoms, and our country. It is my honor to introduce to you Eric Hunter(left), and Josh Wetzel.


Of course the first non-injury related item they talked about was football. By that, I mean Auburn and Alabama. Eric is an Alabama fan, and Josh is an Auburn fan.

Eric and Josh were both in different explosions at different areas in Afghanistan on the same day! They both went to at the same time and then Germany together and were both on the same plane ride back to the U.S. and then both to Walter Reed together AND both ended up across the hall from each other. We have some friendly Alabama vs Auburn competition now at Walter Reed Hospital and a dear friend for life!!

The friends and families of these two soldiers have set up respective facebook pages where the above excerpt was taken. Take a look at both pages, and prepare to be astonished at how brave their wives are.

My Take....

The work life of any United States military family is chaotic at times, scary at other times, and almost never normal. Not what those of us that have never served in our military would call normal. The worst part of being a military family, is the ever present danger that goes along with the job description.

To say "thank you" seems so trivial. "Appreciate" doesn't even come close to describing the feelings I have towards these men and the countless others who have served for our country, or their families who often sacrifice right along with them.

I know that you turned here today to talk sports. I get that. One of the privileges of writing here on Track Em Tigers, is that I know without a doubt I am reaching the sports fan in all of us. We don't always agree on every topic, but hey, we love our sports. Eric and Josh are sports fans, and soldiers too.

Through these brave young men we see that our wonderful rivalry is just that. A rivalry. Not life and death. We enjoy the freedom to choose which team we will pull for, along with all that goes with having the best college sports rivalry on the planet. Eric and Josh are a small part of each of us. Their friendship is an example of the way a rivalry can be enjoyed.

Today we celebrate our country's independence. I want to dedicate this year's celebration to Josh, Eric, and their families, for they are shinning examples of America.

Happy Independence Day!