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"Smith" Delivers, Offers Needed Reminder - 04/02/13

Last Saturday, I saw the play "Smith" at Nazareth College.

I feel as if we lose sight on what's happening each day overseas. Words like 'sequester' often offer a lasting distraction to the fact that each day, men and women in Afghanistan and Iraq put their lives in danger, for the sake of you, me, and the soil on which we stand.

A 22-year-old myself, war has captivated the headlines that I read, only now, those headlines aren't on page 1A " youll have to dig deeper to find the real stories.

The heroic stories.

I fear that my generation, and generations behind me will become desensitized to the images we see and read from overseas. I fear we'll forget the names of those who sacrificed for us.

To forget is one of our greatest faults. To not have it in the forefront of our minds each day is a blatant disregard for the fact that somewhere, if not now, soon, a mother is crying. A sister lost her brother. A father lost his best friend. A wife lost a husband.

All because someone put their country before themselves.

Prior to Sean's piece exposed me to the play, I didn't know much about Lance Cpl. Zach Smith's real story. I didn't know he was a friend to all, and wasn't too different from a friend that you or I may share. I didn't know how he reacted in his 6th grade classroom when a second plane had hit the World Trade Center. I didn't know about the girl he married at such a young age. I didn't hear his mother's eulogy.

I'll never know. But now, I'm at least familiar. And for that, I'm fortunate.

The loss of life at such a young age is an event marked with confusion. I lost one of my best friend's in a car accident when I was 19. The reactions I had, my friends had, and his family had were so similar to those portrayed in the play, that one cannot ignore how much effort and work was done on behalf of the cast to truly grasp Smith's story.

It was, perhaps, the most true, telling, and inspiring performance that has been put on at an area college.

It was real. It wasn't easy, but it was important.

I applaud the cast and crew - but more importantly, I thank them " theyve done all who saw the play a service.

They taught us that we can't forget.

- Joe Leverone
Assignment Desk Assistant

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