- I'm the author of four books: Warrior SOS, The Work of Death, Together Forever, and Leaders Wanted. I'm in the doc film Please Remove Your Shoes. I've blogged for The Washington Times, and I write for Guns.com. I've worked for the high-profile U.S.-led Roadmap to Mideast Peace in Israel and Palestine. I've also worked as a SWAT team leader, a Federal Air Marshal and a sole-source training instructor on a classified contract with a U.S. government customer. My master's degree is in Military Studies and terrorism. I'm a former noncommissioned and commissioned Army officer, with service in Iraq. I've been Scuba diving and skydiving; I have trained with members of the U.S. Olympic Ski Team, and I'm an FBI-trained crisis negotiator. My interests lie in helping others and in strengthening America through inspiring moral courage, government fiscal responsibility and accountability, and maintaining principles that have made--and will continue to make--the United States of America a blessed and prosperous country. I'm a father of six, a husband, and a police officer. I reside in Utah, and I'm a Mormon. See also www.Jeffrey-Denning.com.
April 30, 2011
John Masson (picture taken from JohnMasson.com)
True Christianity is love in action. There is no better way to manifest love for God than to show an unselfish love for your fellow men.
—David O. McKay (1951-1970)
I called John Masson recently. John lost both of his legs and his good arm last October in Afghanistan while conducting a military Special Forces mission. I called to invite him to come out to the Memorial Day event held at a local cemetery, of which I was asked to deliver the keynote address. This event has gone on for 140 years, and I'm thrilled to be a part of it. At the event, I was going to recognize John. I invited him to be there. The event organizer also asked if he could be a part of the flag raising ceremony.
John expressed sorrow that he could not attend, however he's still in Walter-Reed Hospital in Washington D.C. and has another operation scheduled soon. He was incredibly thankful for the invitation.
We had a long conversation. He expressed deep appreciation for the great outpouring of love and kindness from so many people.
He said he was fitted with two prosthetic legs and had been doing walking therapy. During our conversation he both wondered aloud why something like that would happen to him, but he said he thanked God he was alive.
I told him that I loved him, and that I had been praying for him and thinking of him since his accident last October, which our mutual friend had told me about and had continued to give me updates about him. When I expressed my love and appreciation for him—even calling him a hero, for to me he is having sacrificed himself to serve our beloved county—at my comment, John said, "I have been having a real hard day. Thank you for saying that. It really means a lot." Tears nearly filled my eyes and dropped.
Later I was reminded of a wonderful passage I found many years ago while reading Dale Carnegie's well-known book, "How to Win Friends and Influence People," wherein is written this:
"I shall pass this way but once; any good, therefore, that I can do or any kindness that I can show to ay human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again." (as qtd in How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie, Pocketbooks, Simon & Schuster Inc., 82, p 31.)
At the end of our conversation John encouraged me. He wished me luck in my speech on Memorial Day, in which all of the local media will be present. He said simply, "prepare and do all you can, and God will help you."
To read amazing interviews with warriors, check out Warrior SOS: Interviews, Insights and Inspiration, the book on Amazon.com. Here's the link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00D3WO7VK