The Wealthy and Wise in Other Mens’ Eyes

On November 17, 2010, the President named fifteen recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.  The Medal of Freedom is the Nation’s highest civilian honor, presented to individuals who have made notable contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, to world peace, or to cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.  The awards are due to be presented at a White House ceremony early this year.

President Obama said, “These outstanding honorees come from a broad range of backgrounds and they’ve excelled in a broad range of fields, but all of them have lived extraordinary lives that have inspired us, enriched our culture, and made our country and our world a better place.”

Many of the recipients you’ll know by name:

Ex-President George H.W. Bush (“The Elder”); the brilliant cellist Yo-Yo Ma; basketball legend Bill Russell; baseball icon Stan “The Man” Musial; poet and activist Maya Angelou; billionaire and philanthropist Warren Buffett.  Other names on the list don’t get the publicity that these individuals have received in their lifetimes, such as holocaust survivor Gerda Weissmann Klein.  But the name on the list that touched me most was the one individual who is receiving the award posthumously:  Dr. Tom Little.   Murdered in Afghanistan during one of his many charity missions there giving eyecare services through the National Organization of Ophthalmic Rehabilitation Clinic that he helped establish, Tom was a real optometric hero.  You can read more about him here and there is a wonderful, inspirational blog tribute to his legacy online


About Leonard J. Press, O.D., FAAO, FCOVD

Developmental Optometry is my passion as well as occupation. Blogging allows me to share thoughts in a unique visual style.
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3 Responses to The Wealthy and Wise in Other Mens’ Eyes

  1. WC Maples says:

    Why does the article refer to Drl Tom Little as Mister?

    WC

    • Two possibilities: 1) editorial error 2) editorial policy. Believe it or not, at one point not that long ago The Wall Street Journal had the unenlightened policy of only referring to MDs as “Doctor”, and all others such as dentists, optometrists, podiatrists as “Mister”. I believe in England they still refer to nonsurgical MDs as “mister”. Old pecking orders die hard.

  2. Daniel Wohlgelernter says:

    thank you, Len, for honoring Dr. Tom Little with your post. I feel humbled after reading of the enormity of his commitment and sacrifice.

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