Saturday was the Pinewood Derby for my boy scouts. I worked in the kitchen selling hot dogs to raise funds for camp scholarships, and so my angle on things was a little different from most of the spectators. This scene that I have captured here is a very poignant one, and I want to introduce you to the hero pictured here.
Lief was my oldest son’s den leader last year. He’s a big burly guy, with several earrings and more than one tattoo. He’s bold, and he’s loud, and the kids just LOVE him. Mr. Lief, Mr. Lief, Mr. Lief. And not just from Stuntman, either, but from most of my kids, LOL! Lief has no kids, and he was rooked into leading the den by a friend of his. His day job is teaching, which seems pretty basic, until I tell you that he teaches at the juvenile detention center. I just found out a few weeks ago that Lief is not as young as I thought. I guess I figured that he taught there because that’s the type of job he could find, being so young, and with the earrings and tats an all. In fact, the man is 35 years old. But really, none of that is what makes him a hero. That stuff is just an ordinary guy who happens to care a lot about kids.
In this picture, he’s helping with the Pinewood Derby. He had the job of gathering the cars after each run and taking them back up to the front of the room. On his way back, he’d crouch real low and “five” the boys as he went. The kids absolutely ate it up! You see I’ve caught him here with the American flag while he was waiting for a set of cars to come down the track. In one month, Lief is going back to Iraq. Yes, I said back. What makes him a hero is that a month from his tour, he’s still making these kids’ day, still involved with them, still so “here” for them.