A Significant Highlight Of Service

COL(RET) Rick Rescorla, USA

To my readers:  I am sure that you grown adults have seen some of the major motion pictures for the past tens or year so.  If you have seen “We Were Soldiers” with Mel Gibson, then you’ve seen the movie narrative of the Battle of the Ia Drang Valley, the first significant battle with the Viet Cong using the Air Cavalry doctrine, engaged with the 1st Cavalry Division’s 1/7 CAV, MG George Armstrong Custer’s old unit.

One of the company commanders (and it is difficult to discern them in the  movie) is a representation of Mr. Rick Rescorla. His wiki bio is found here.  At any rate, this man was a veteran of war in Rhodesia with the British Army, who later emigrated to the United States and served very honorably in the United States Army, to include the Ia Drang with the 1/7 CAV under then-LTC Hal Moore.*  In the battle, Mr. Rescorla cooly kept his company together in the face of over a regiment (meaning in English: outnumbered over 4 – 6 to 1) of Viet Cong soldiers.

You may be wondering why these facts are important.  The fact is, Mr. Rick Rescorla served his nation – his adopted one – until the day he died on 11 September, 2001.  Mr. Rescorla was under the employ of Dean Witter / Morgan Stanley when the two jets hit the Twin Towers.  Mr. Rick Rescorla sacrificed his life in the 9/11 attack, and he is credited by some sources with saving upward of 2000 other lives by his cool demeanor, steady action, and firm commitment to duty while assisting with the Twin Towers’ evacuation before they collapsed.  Just as he did in the Ia Drang, I would add.  Unfortunately for our nation, Mr. Rescola died performing this last, selfless act.  I could say he had more than adequate preparation over thirty years ago, and executed his Last Full Measure of Duty flawlessly if I were qualified to judge.

So what exactly am I attempting to convey to you, Mr. or Mrs. devoted reader of my blog?  To answer that, think about the links I provided and the story I just relayed.  All of it is real.  All of it really happened, thirty – and then – ten years past.  This heroic individual was willing to lead Americans into battle, and did so with valor.  On down the road, Mr. Rescorla did so again, for a people not of his own origin, and for a belief in a set of principles that in this day our own politicians tend to ignore.

I am not a religious person.  I have my own, unique set of beliefs.  I do believe, however, that Mr. Richard Rescola, late of England, lately (at least ten years ago) of our United States of America, will enjoy a true warrior’s death and reward.  I have no idea what that might entail, but I aspire to it someday.  I trust that Mr. Rescola now enjoys the rewards of service in whatever great beyond awaits those of us who serve.  Call it Valhalla if you like, Heaven, or Nirvana.  I know of no other examples of British subjects sacrificing themselves in this way for our Nation since the Revolutionary War, though I’m sure it has happened between then and now.  If you wish to know of the stuff that heroes are made, look no further than Mr. Richard Rescola.

I have thought of him today, on 9/11 as should we all.

*I had the honor of working with General (Ret) Moore’s son,  COL (Ret) Dave, in my current duty here in Kansas.  I see much of what little I know of General Moore in his son, and none of that comes from the motion picture.


8 Responses to “A Significant Highlight Of Service”

  1. Thanks for sharing this.

  2. John Erickson Says:

    I used to work for a branch of Dean Witter that got sold to Citibank. The so-and-sos in management told us that all the Dean Witter employees had gotten out of the Towers safely. So much for the goodness in the hearts of Citicorp management.
    We need to invent a new word for the English language, one for soldiers past and present, to use in place of the over-used and over-tired “hero”. Something that will indicate the person had served or is serving, and carries those sterling qualities into everyday life.
    Pity that “awesome” and “superhero” have already been taken… 😉

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