Monday, August 26, 2013

Who's your Jimmy?

As a little girl arriving in a new land, I navigated some experiences reserved for those of a visible minority. 

We have all felt the scorn of someone's unfeeling words, whether they had to do with our looks, shape, pocketbooks or where we lived. But heroes emerge in disguise. My hero was a pint-sized dreamboat named Jimmy Grecco. Jimmy could make girls swoon. He was smart and sweet and an entrepreneur. I recall him selling his older brothers' (who had their own band) autographs in order to supplement his allowance.

Jimmy came to my rescue when he heard an unkind interaction. He spoke up on my behalf, he brandished his sword of words and demanded an apology of the culprit. He stood his ground.

A few years ago, I read an article about Jimmy (now a more grown up Jim). He was in my home town, across the country from where we were classmates in Mr. Stewart's class. He was now Lt.-Col. Jim Grecco and his 416 Fighter Squadron was being honoured. I was not surprised that Jimmy had led a life of distinction, he had the makings when we were in grade six.

I have kept that newspaper clipping to remind me of all the Jimmys in the world. Those who stand up for a cause because there is a need. Jimmy provided me with the belief that heroes are everywhere. They could even be sitting in the desk beside you.

Close to five decades have passed since then but if you know Jimmy, tell him I still remember. (Click to Tweet)

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