• 54°

Giving thanks to those who keep us safe

I’ve often thought the term “hero” is very much overused. Whether it’s sports, politics or economics, people who do great things for other people are not all heroes.

I consider true heroes those who are in uniform, saving Americans and defending our liberties as citizens of the United States. Emergency services providers who bring those thought to be dead back to life and fire firefighters who enter burning buildings to save children are heroes. Anyone who saves lives is a hero.

That’s why I think the men honored during the recent Piedmont Alcohol Safety Action Program (ASAP) are heroes.

These men — Robert E. Ragland, of the Farmville Police Department; Chris M. Joyner, of the Prince Edward County Sheriff’s Office; Matthew Gills, of the Longwood University Police Department; Gavin T. Lee, a state trooper who works in Buckingham; Benjamin S. Davis, a state trooper who works in Cumberland; and Todd Farris, a state trooper who works in Prince Edward County — each took at least five drunk drivers off of roads across Buckingham, Farmville, Prince Edward and Cumberland in 2016.

They were honored by the community and ASAP for their efforts, and rightly so.

According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), on average, every two minutes, a person is injured in a drunk driving crash.

Two in three people, in their lifetime, will be involved in a drunk driving crash.

On average, every day in America, 27 people die as a result of drunk driving crashes.

Anyone of these people could be one of us, or even worse, our mother, father, sister, brother, friend, boyfriend or girlfriend.

The list goes on.

These men, who are heroes through their diligence and hard work, saved lives in 2016. And for that, every man, woman and child who lives in this area should be thankful.

I know I am.

JORDAN MILES is a senior staff writer with The Farmville Herald. His email address is Jordan.Miles@farmvilleherald.com.