We like to think of American servicemen and women as heroes. But I think that is wrong. I think using that term on people like me who did nothing in the service diminishes the sacrifices of people who are actual heroes. People like Chris Kyle. If you don’t know who that is, take a break from watching reality TV and taking selfies with your food and pay attention.
Chief Petty Officer Chris Kyle was a member of the U.S. Navy’s elite SEAL Team 3 where he served as a sniper. He served fours tours of duty in Iraq with 160 kills, earning two Silver Star Medals and five Bronze Star Medals, among other commendations. The military won’t confirm the actual number of kills but 160 has been used as the most accurate. This places Kyle as the most effective sniper in US history.
His skills on the battlefield saved countless American lives of his fellow service members and resulted on the enemy placing a $80,000 bounty on his head. His longest shot was against an enemy sniper at a distance of 2,100 yards (over a mile). Kyle survived through six separate IED (Improvised Explosive Device) attacks and being shot twice. Kyle served from 1999 to 2009 and after returning to the US and leaving the service he wrote a book about his experiences, American Sniper. The book later on was turned into an incredibly popular film by the same name. That 2014 film directed by Clint Eastwood was nominated for five Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Actor.
I actually met Chris Kyle several years ago after his book came out. He was on a panel with other authors at the SHOT Show and he spoke in the humblest manner about himself and his service. Given his accomplishments, that made an impression on me. Even after leaving the service Kyle did not stop serving his country and his fellow veterans. He started working with troubled vets, helping them deal with PTSD and other issues. It was while trying to help someone that Kyle and his friend, Chad Littlefield, were shot and killed by a very troubled veteran, the very man they were trying to help. There is no other way to describe it but to say that Kyle died serving his country.
Kyle was also fully committed to our gun rights and the Second Amendment. His second book, American Gun: A History of the U.S. in Ten Firearms, was published posthumously and is a testament to his belief in our American exceptionalism and the importance of firearms in our history. Given his long record of accomplishment it seems only fitting that a major gun manufacturer like Springfield Armory would want to honor and commemorate Kyle with a special edition and exclusive pistol.
Read the rest of the review at GunsAmerica.com