The brothers in this clip are much like any other brothers that you will find anywhere else in the country. Jack and Carter Hanson are just your typical ten year old boys, they enjoy video games, playing sports, all of the usual young male pursuits. However, these boys are unlike their peers and have a hobby that sets them apart from the rest of their contemporaries.
Their hobby began innocently enough, over games of Battleship. The popular war strategy game piqued the boys’ interest in naval warfare and their parents decided to fuel their curiosity with a family trip to Charleston, North Carolina. While in Charleston, the boys were able to catch a glimpse of the Yorktown, a well known aircraft carrier that has since been retired.
After returning home from their trip, the boys said that the journey to Charleston had changed their lives. During the family excursion, the boys learned more about the legendary Robert Harding. He is known for his outstanding service aboard the Yorktown. The brothers began an e-mail correspondence with Harding and this only served to stoke the fires of their interest.
Eventually, Carter and Jack were able to set up a much anticipated meeting with their hero. The clip shows the viewer what happened once this meeting was finally able to take place. The boys are so overwhelmed with excitement when they are given the opportunity to meet their favorite World War II hero.
They immediately run over to him and swarm Robert with hugs, affection and most importantly, appreciation. Appreciation for what he has done for their country. In a world where children no longer have the same sense of history and appreciation for what their forefathers were able to accomplish, seeing two young men with such a genuine and sincere appreciation for this war veteran truly warms the heart.
Carter and Jack are all smiles and filled with an immense sense of gratitude, as Harding’s heroics paved the way for the America that we are blessed to live in today. Harding appreciates the love and affection he is receiving from the young men and his reaction makes it clear that this is not something he is accustomed to. His laughter is infectious, his joy is contagious and it is impossible to watch this clip without smiling and laughing along with the jovial veteran.
This clip serves as proof that children have not lost their ability to show respect to their elders, to appreciate those that came before them and put in the hard work to make their lives easier. Their pure, unbridled enthusiasm in the face of their hero is enjoyable to watch and should bring a smile to the face of anyone (and maybe even a tear to the eye).