My friend Adam just asked about the eligibility of soldiers as heroes. My answer was that I think the basic definition says there must be perceived risk, and selfless intentions to be a hero. So the choice to enter the armed forces could well be considered heroic, but once a solider, there is a difference between doing your job and being a hero.
Kasi at the Loving a Soldier, Living the Life blog has written a post saying neither she nor her husband consider him a hero because he’s in the army. Here’s what she had to say.
But I’ve talked to my husband, and he talked to his teammates, and to them the word ‘hero’ is reserved for people who do something extraordinary, and most of our guys don’t see themselves as heroes at all. ‘Hero’ is reserved for people who throw themselves on grenades to save others, or who die recovering the treat of the wounded. Or for the medic who strips off his body armor in the middle of the street because he can’t do a proper job of what he needs to do to treat the wounded in it. To my husband and his co-workers, the inappropriate use of the word hero not only cheapens the sacrifices of the true heroes, but also makes the person misusing the term look bad.