On this Memorial Day I choose to think about Zach. I realize he did not die serving the American Armed Forces, but I do believe he died serving. I respect those who sacrificed themselves in the military, but they are not my personal heroes.
I believe heroes define themselves before their death. I believe heroes inspire all of us to become a better version of ourselves. They show us how to stand for what you believe in and how to live with courage and integrity.
Zach is a hero. Not because he died in combat overseas. Not because he fought a battle against cancer. Not because he died young. He is a hero because he understood what living is about and he lived it. He lived with joy and gratitude. He spread the gift of love and compassion. He saw the best in others, when others could only see faults. He faced death with quiet, calm surrender. He is a hero because he put down the sword, and allowed his death to be a victory over fear and suffering.
He said “try to make other people happy” as if it was the secret to life. Perhaps it is. I think that the way you live will define the way you die. I believe that the key to happiness lies in how you perceive your circumstances. In your perception lies ultimate freedom from pain and suffering.
I am so glad that I found this video this Memorial Day. I choose to remember the heroes that inspire me. I hope to emulate my heroes and eventually become my own hero. I’ll leave you with my favorite quote from Zach,
“Life is just beautiful moments, one after the other.”
Be grateful for each moment and death will be just one more beautiful moment.