Dhaka, 28 July, Abnews: Col. Jack L. Usrey is shown standing in the rain as he salutes a passing hearse and a funeral procession along Joe Prather Highway. Erin Hester, who took the photo, released it to social media.
ISSUE: Soldier’s salute goes viral on social media
OUR VIEW: Photo serves as important reminder
Occasionally, something happens that captures everyone’s attention and goes viral on social media. Most of the time, the viral postings are cute animals or people doing dumb things to get attention. Not this time.
Col. Jack L. Usrey stopped for a passing funeral in the pouring rain. Despite the conditions, he stepped out of his Jeep, stood at attention and saluted as the family and friends passed him by.
Usrey didn’t know the people. He just wanted to show respect for a fellow human being with this silent tribute.
It was a very simple act of courtesy until a Vine Grove resident in the next vehicle shared a picture taken through her rain-splattered windshield. The image posted by Erin Hester went viral on Facebook and Twitter and even made national news broadcasts. People across the country and the world are buzzing about it.
It makes you wonder why a person doing something decent and kind can stir such emotion in so many people. A generation ago, stopping for funerals was expected and commonplace. Times are different now. Basic courtesy is rare. Col. Usrey act of kindness and respect goes over and above expectations.
With 24-hour news, cellphones and the non-stop bombardment of information — good, bad and vulgar — often we react on impulse without first asking ourselves is this right or is this the best that I can do?
Usrey’s example demonstrates a need to slow down, put our phones down and pay attention to one another.
It begins by actually having face-to-face conversations and enjoying mealtime with our families without electronic interference. His act reminds to help elderly neighbors carry in their groceries. It points out the importance of simple signs of respect demonstrated by saying “yes, sir” and “no, ma’am” or greeting people with a sincere “good morning” to start the day.
Usrey set a wonderful example for us all that rainy day on Joe Prather Highway. And, the appropriate response to his lesson, is to offer a hearty “thank you” to Ms. Hester for bringing it to the community and the world.
This editorial reflects a consensus of The News-Enterprise editorial board.
Source: The News-Enterprise