There are few things in the world capable of making a Marine master sergeant’s voice crack and his eyes well with tears.
Delivering the first salute to his newly commissioned officer son is one of them.
That is just what happened when Master Sergeant Michael Fisher, an instructor in the Marine Corps Junior ROTC program, delivered the first salute to his son on the occasion of the younger Fisher’s commissioning as a second lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps.
The elder Fisher posted his heartfelt welcoming on TikTok, where the video quickly went viral, garnering millions of views, and caught the attention of an Associated Press reporter.
@e8msgtRendering my son his 1st Salute! ##marine ##2ndLT ##usmc ##fatherson ##fyp ##military ##instructor♬ original sound – Mike Fisher
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In the video, both father and son are seen maintaining their composure only through the legendary stoicism so common to the Marines.
As he delivered a slow salute, accepting not only the maturation of his son but also the welcoming of a new officer, Fisher spoke the words that have since captured the heart and soul of America.
“It is a privilege to render you your first salute,” he said, “but it is a greater honor to say congratulations, sir, on your commission.”
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The emotional ceremony was not only a celebration of a thriving family and the continuation of a noble military tradition, however. It was also an undeniable realization of the American dream.
In an age defined by hyper-partisanship and rancorous debates about racism that have even entered the Pentagon, Fisher wanted the world to know that what matters most is a healthy family life and a commitment to service.
In an interview this week with Black News Channel, Fisher directly addressed the importance of healthy families and the need to foster a commitment to the American nation.
“As a father, you just want to see your kids be productive citizens of society,” Fisher said. “He always said, ‘Dad, I want to be like you when I grow up,’ and I said, ‘No, I want you to be better than me.’”
Fisher also reminisced about making his son run drills in the front yard, teaching him to catch a baseball and even bringing him to Marine Corps balls.
Above all, he stressed a commitment to fostering a strong and loving family life.
“We have no problems showing our emotions,” Fisher said. “Growing up I always told him I loved him. He knew that and I knew he loved me too.”
Regarding attempts to render his family’s beautiful story into one merely about race or diversity within the military, Fisher maintained that his family’s story was one of service and hope.
“A lot of different people see this in different ways,” he said, “but I just want to make sure that they take a positive out of this more than anything else.”
Indeed, the Fisher family’s celebration of service and commitment to the American nation is a story that transcends race, creed or color.
It is emblematic of the real progress and positive cultural change that America has fostered throughout centuries of patriotic struggle.
The Fishers are a symbol of that love and service, and of the families that must always form the backbone of Western culture wherever it flourishes.
More simply, they are a symbol of what it means to be Marines, and a credit to their nation.
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