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We did not know 2nd Lt. Dimitri del Castillo personally, but we know that he was a hero in more ways than one.

We know the lieutenant must have been a smart man; he graduated from West Point. He must also have had great taste since he married and loved one of Rockdale's own shining stars, Katie Pulliam, herself a graduate of West Point.

When Katie and Dimitri choose to serve their country and to go to West Point, they knew and accepted the risks involved of being placed in harm's way.

Two weeks ago Lt. Dimitri del Castillo paid the ultimate price for having the courage and the will to serve in the front lines in order for us to enjoy the sweet, tranquil life here in Rockdale County.

His untimely death in defense of our liberties left a young bride without her love and robbed his family of a son. His death was the price he was willing to pay in order to insure that people he did not even know could live in peace.

We salute Lt. Dimitri del Castillo, a real American hero, and in his memory and we are determined that his sacrifice was not in vain.

Each of us in our way has to work every day a little harder and to get involved a little more for our community and nation to see that the principals set forth by our forefathers and protected by heroes such as Lt Castillo never goes away.

God Bless the family of 2nd Lt. Dimitri del Castillo. May they have comfort in his sacrifice and may he have eternal peace.