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The Chinese attacked that night, and at 11:25 p.m., the man who could have been a prince of Hollywood ended his tour of duty in a mortar explosion. There was no slow motion, no swell of music, no close-up for the camera this time. PFC Ricardo Carrasco’s reel death and real death had played out about 12 hours apart.

The cease-fire was signed on July 27, 1953. The movie “Cease Fire!” premiered in November 1953. Ricardo had been the only one to return to the front before the cease-fire, the only one to see battle again, and the only one to die - twice in one day. The movie, like the war, was not popular. The movie, like the war, faded into the past and never received much notice or attention. The men of the movie, like the men of that war, moved on with their lives - all except one, who left his life on a hillside in Korea after leaving his once-in-a-lifetime mark on Hollywood.

God chooses sides and commands us to do no less. The soldier is the epitome of this choice - a choice born of magnanimous, miraculous, meticulous love, with no expectation of return. For Ricardo, the war became what it becomes for all good soldiers. It wasn’t about communism, America or freedom. It was about those men he so loved, his “fellahs.” He went back to the front to be with them not because he had to but because he chose to.

The only fully mortal man to come close to comparing with a perfect gift of sacrifice is the warrior. Even with their own personal weaknesses, warriors achieve a type of selfless sacrifice that can only compare to godliness. They know that “greater love” isn’t measured by what you give but by what you give up for your friends. God bless the warriors - and forgive our treatment of them. Their vigilance is America’s only hope, for in the course of awful, painful, heartbreaking, glorious human events, they make the stands that cost their lives but save our souls.

Resa LaRu Kirkland blogs under the name WARCHICK and is author of the forthcoming book “Forgotten Warrior: Twice in One Day.”