Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Misdirected Fame

Since the May 22nd tornado hit Joplin, MO, my life's been fairly busy.

I've been interviewed by my peers (and people I consider well above me in talent levels) from New York City, to St. Louis, to New Zealand, to London.

I'm part of a staff that's been honored by city, state, and federal governments with proclamations, plaques, declarations, and the like.

I, personally, have been called a hero.

And you know what? I don't deserve a bit of it.

All us folks at KZRG did the night of May 22nd and the days and weeks later was our jobs. True, we went above and beyond the call of duty to provide what help we could to our communities, but isn't that all we ask of anyone who has the opportunity to do so? We, as broadcasters, did what our craft calls us to do: inform the public.

We also did it all because Joplin is not just a city we serve from a business standpoint: for so many of us, it's our home. We, too, had friends and neighbors who lost everything, including their lives. For us, it was personal... so many of us lost possessions, homes, whatever, and we not only worked to keep the public informed, but to keep ourselves from going crazy.

These accolades are all nice, and I don't mean to imply we didn't earn at least some of the attention, but I think if anyone should be honored, it's the REAL heroes: the police and fire teams that worked intensely and desperately to save lives, the officials who coordinated and calmed a terrified public, the volunteers from across the world that gave their time, money, and sweat to help this community not only dig out, but rebuild.

You want to call someone a hero? Those are a few, more worthy examples.