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Apr-08-2012 11:37printcomments

Help the Family of a Rhode Island National Guard Hero

“Actions speak louder than words”

Dennis Weichel
Dennis Weichel

(HARRISVILLE, N.H.) - Here is the letter I just wrote to the two Senators and the Governor of Rhode Island. If you can send a similar letter in behalf of the family this young man left behind, I would personally appreciate it. Thanks. Here are the addresses you would need if you can find it in your heart to dedicate the time it takes to write those letters:

    Senator Jack Reed - (Rhode Island):
    728 Hart
    Senate Office Building Washington, D.C.
    Senator Sheldon Whitehouse - (Rhode Island):
    717 Hart
    Senate Office Building
    Washington, D.C.
    Governor Lincoln Chafee - (Rhode Island):
    82 Smith Street
    Providence, RI 02903

Dear Senator Reed, Senator Whitehouse, and Governor Chafee:

A citizen of Rhode Island . . . Sgt. Dennis Weichel of the Rhode Island National Guard, gave his life to save the life of an Afghan child . . . as it turned out, the child of a Taliban insurgent. His death leaves three young children fatherless and makes their future more tenuous.

Gentlemen, soldiers are frequently decorated in war zones. However, too many of those decorations involve the taking of life. Regardless of how necessary the taking of lives during war-time is, it still must be viewed as being a negative thing. With Sgt. Weichel, we have an opportunity to celebrate his life, his positive deeds, and the ideals he stood for . . . ideals that the state of Rhode Island and the entire United States of America should be proud to claim as their own.

While his deeds may be viewed as relatively small when compared to the vastness of the Afghan war zone and the actions taking place there every day, his heroic deed in saving the life of a child stood gigantic in the even greater vastness of humanity and brotherhood. The old adage of “Actions speak louder than words” is very true but an article written by Tim King, Editor of communicates far better than I can just how meaningful Sgt. Weichel’s heroic action was and is. It clearly shows that the U.S. soldier honors life and knows full-well its value. This article relates to the reader that fatherhood, brotherhood, and humanity . . . when left to its own instinctive devices, knows no boundaries. Religion, politics, and national borders become meaningless in an instant when another father’s child is at risk. The natural instinct of a father, a brother, and a human being take precedence over everything else. The following is a link to the story written by Tim King about Sgt. Wheichel:

My concern is that the family of this hero . . . this shining example of the U.S. soldier . . . may end-up paying the price for his selflessness. He will not be there to save for his children’s college education or for their medical treatment if and when the need arises. Is there something you gentlemen can do to help in this regard? Losing a father is bad enough. He will not be there for all of those things that fill childhood with memories that should include a Dad. He will not be there to calm the anxieties or eliminate the fears that usually accompany growth into adulthood.

My hope gentlemen, is that you will open your hearts to the potential plight of the family Sgt. Weichel left behind and do what you can in their behalf. If tuition-free admission to one of the colleges in Rhode Island could be made available to his children, I’m sure this would alleviate some of the worry his wife must be feeling about the future of his family. If you could just match the brotherhood and humanity shown by Sgt. Weichel, in caring for his family, the state of Rhode Island would stand head and shoulders above most states in caring for its veterans.


Robert M. Collinsworth
PO Box 119
Harrisville, NH 03450-0119
(603) 827-3097


Writer Robert Collinsworth is an American who isn't hesitant to talk about the good side of his country, and that is a welcome thing in this day and age. admittedly, is very critical of both American politics, as well as those of other nations that we perceive is being wrong in their motives and actions. At the same time, within these structures we criticize, are many outstanding people who make each day a better place for all those around them. They embody and personify the American spirit that is sometimes fleeting, but always present. These are some of the things Robert takes into account when writing commentary that is designed reach people, to "get them thinking" in his words, and indeed it does.'s goal is for all people to be on the same page, we appreciate Bob's more conservative approach toward that same goal."

You can write to Bob Collingsworth at this email address:

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