This 5 Year Old Has More Courage & Patriotism Than Most Anti-War Fruits.
Posted by Casey on March 24, 2008
Get ready for a tearjerker. I talked about this on my show last week, but have been busy so I hadn’t blogged it yet. I want to introduce you to the youngest soldier ever in the US Army, and he’s already made sergeant.
Five-year-old Gaven Cox was given one wish to do anything he wanted.
Instead of asking to go to Sea World or to meet Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, Gaven modestly asked for some McDonald’s food. The child’s parents laughed and told him to make another choice.
“He told us he wanted to be an Army soldier,” said Melissa Heminger, Gaven’s mom. “I was a little bit surprised that he asked for McDonald’s, but in reality, he wanted to be a soldier since he was 3.”
This was all part of the Make-A-Wish-Foundation program, and they deserve some major props. Gaven has acute lymphoblastic leukemia. While most kids, and most adults, would make a wish for some selfish ‘feel good’ experience (nothing wrong with that) … this kid modestly chose some fast food, and then chose to serve others. We should all consider ourselves extremely fortunate if we ever meet another adult willing to put others before themselves. Yet here is a child facing a potentially fatal disease, and he still chooses others before himself.
The Army didn’t skimp on the training either … they sent this kid to war. Gaven, like his brothers in arms, showed the enemy just what America is made of.
After his promotion, young Sgt. Cox gave a proper Army salute and was given a mission.
“All right, Sgt. Cox, your mission is to go through that gate, ride a horse and kill five enemies,” said Sgt. Christopher Gaines. “Are you ready?”
His 8-year-old sister Jade shouted, “Let’s get them!”
After defeating the “enemy” on horseback, the country’s youngest soldier got to do what most never get to do: Gaven flew a Longbow helicopter.
Well, sort of.
He was granted access to enter a trailer-sized home that was made for training helicopter pilots.
After being seated in the middle of five large rectangular screens, Gaven put on his helmet, equipped with a radio and a microphone.
Eric Fremming, a retired Army aviator who now teaches soldiers how to fly via simulation, began telling Gaven’s father what was going on.
“Right now, we got (Gaven) flying in Iraq,” Fremming said, while pointing to a 12-inch monitor. “When (Gaven) sees some bad guys, he can start shooting.”
After a few seconds, Fremming points to the screen again.
“Oh, wait. Yup, he’s engaged the enemy,” Fremming said.
The simulated machine gun noise overpowered the training area.
“He’s the youngest soldier I’ve ever trained,” Fremming said. “This is just like flying a $40 million Longbow.”
Yet the simulation was just a taste of what was to come as Gaven got perhaps the best gift the Army could give him: an actual ride in a Black Hawk helicopter.
On two fields of battle … Gaven closed with, and destroyed the enemy. Where so many others have failed to display integrity … he has made Americans everywhere proud. So proud, in fact, that he even has his own holiday named after him.
During the Crandall City council meeting Thursday, March 6th 2008, the city council passed a Proclamation making March 14th, 2008 Gaven Cox Day. Gaven, who is 5 years old and has leukemia, is a recipient of a “wish” from the Make a Wish Foundation. Due to the steroids that Gaven was given prior to starting treatment, Gaven had food cravings so his initial wish was for McDonalds! When explained to him that he could make a bigger wish, Gaven, who has wanted to be a soldier since he was three, wished to become a Soldier for a Day. Today, The City of Crandall held a celebration for Gaven on Main Street and they pulled out all of the stops.
Representatives from the Make a Wish Foundation, the Army Reserve Medical Command in Seagoville, CISD, officials from the city and more showed up for Gavin’s send off. The Fire Chief, Tim Atkins, picked Gaven up in a fire truck and drove him to Main Street for the festivities. Tim Brewer opened in prayer and Quincy Roan sang the National Anthem. The rally featured members from the 94th Combat Support Hospital and other tenant units within the Seagoville Army Reserve Center who appointed Gaven Joseph Cox as an Honorary Corporal. The Crandall Volunteer Fire Department also appointed Gaven as an Honorary Firefighter.
When I told the story on my show, my co-host was crying. I’ve been getting emails about the story ever since with much the same reaction.
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