Names are important. I know this because my name is important. It's not a famous name or a wealthy name. It is not attached to any great invention, and you won't find it listed on any Trivial Pursuit card. My name is important because I was named after my grandfather.
I never knew my grandfather; he died July 24, 1966, in Pleiku, South Vietnam. I missed being born on this date in 1980 by twelve days. I became his namesake. It has influenced my life in incalculable ways--his name was important, my name is important.
I joined the Army in September, 2000 under the legacy and history of my name. A year before 9/11, I joined when it was unpopular and old-fashioned to sign your life away. I was no September baby, as we called the wave of incoming privates. I did it because I wanted to be a soldier; I did it because my grandfather had done it.
This November 5, by the same grace, I was granted the privilege of naming my firstborn twin boys. Earlier, whenever I had thought of having a son, I agonized over the responsibility of what name to give him. When I learned that we were having twins, I knew their names right away. I had been given a great gift; there was symmetry. I could name my sons after the two platoon mates, my brothers-in-arms, my two friends, who did not come home from Iraq.
Names are important. My sons' names are the most important. They are named after two of the greatest men you will never know. They are named after men of honor and sacrifice. My boys will have the duty to live a life that is worthy of such sacrifice. They can never replace the men they were named for, but they can live up to them. They must live a life both men gave up so that new life can follow destruction and loss. One day when they are older I will explain all this to them. I will tell them that names are important. I will tell them they are named after: Adam Plumondore KIA 16 Feb 2005, Mosul Iraq, and Benjamin "Rat" Morton KIA 22 May 2005, Mosul Iraq.
David Paul Spears II
|Adam Plumondore & Benjamin "Rat" Morton|
|Adam Luther Spears & Benjamin Oliver Spears|