Closing comment – Inspirational citizens of the world

Trio II, Copyright 2012 by Cyril Verron (flickr)

I started writing this “Closing comment” on Thursday night, but didn’t get a chance to finish it before the workweek had disappeared. While it may be a day late, I was pleased to have another 24 hours to reflect on the topic and add some additional thoughts.

There is inspiration all around us; however, today’s post focuses on the inspirational people who serve their countries overseas and an inspiring article about my brother Patrick.

To the men and women who serve their countries overseas in the military or as members of the consular corps, we salute you. Sadly, in recent weeks, we have seen a number of people from the military and the consular corps killed.

On Wednesday, our thoughts were with the families, friends and colleagues of four US officials, including the American ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens, killed in the city of Benghazi. Only 12 days earlier, five Australian soldiers were killed in Afghanistan on one of Australia’s darkest days since the Vietnam War.

I am proud to count many people serving in the military and the consular corps as friends and colleagues, and every time I get the chance to spend time with them – be it a minute or an hour – I walk away inspired.

The Australian soldiers have been farewelled by their families, friends and colleagues as well as the Australian public, and their service to our country will always be remembered. Like the many Australian soldiers killed in previous decades and centuries, they will continue to inspire us.

Among the sadness that we’ve been confronted with in recent weeks, there are some truly uplifting stories, including a personal one for the c word and my family.

Earlier in the week, my brother Patrick was profiled by the University of the Sunshine Coast in an article on their website: ‘Cerebral palsy is no barrier for new teacher’.

If you’ve ever met Patrick you will know he’s not afraid of a challenge or a conversation. The article is an inspiring piece about finishing his second degree, a Graduate Diploma of Education, at USC, and securing a teaching contract at Coolum State High School.

“My dream finally feels like a reality,” Patrick said. “I am thoroughly enjoying teaching my own classes and making positive contributions to the lives of young people and the school community.”

How can these amazing people at home and abroad not inspire us?

Have a great weekend and soak up the inspiration.


Jack & the c word crew

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