Thursday, June 30th, 2016

The Signers of the Declaration of Independence

I couldn’t think of a better subject for my July 2016 Everyday Heroes blog than the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence. We are about to celebrate the July 4th holiday, which has become, for many Americans, nothing more than a vacation and barbecue day. I watched a “man in the street” interview segment on a television news program yesterday and was shocked that none of the people questioned could answer any of the following questions: What do we celebrate on July 4? From what country did the United States win its independence? What was the date of the Declaration of Independence?

July 4 is so much more than a holiday. It is representative of a freedom movement that changed the world.

I thought about who I wanted to spotlight in my July blog and came up with plenty of possibilities. But just as I sat down to write this monthly blog, I received a newsletter from John Trudel (, a  fellow thriller writer. John’s post highlighted the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, their professions, and the price that many of them paid for having stood up for freedom and independence.

I try to keep my Everyday Heroes blog posts brief, so I will not go into detail about the pain and suffering that many of the signers endured. I highly recommend you read about these men. There are many history books that deal with their lives. Suffice it to say, that some were captured and tortured by the British. Others had their homes ransacked and burned. Many were wealthy and knew the price they might pay for standing up for freedom. Many paid a heavy price. But think about the legacy they left us all. Can you put a price on that?

After I researched what these signers did, I was even more amazed at what so many men and women risked and accomplished to give us a system of government that was the first of its kind and has helped to make the United States of America a place for freedom-loving people. Not only must we honor the deeds and courage of the founders, but we must never forget the price that many Americans have paid in the 240 years since July 4, 1776. This is a reminder that freedom is not free and that many Americans paid a high price—and still do today—to allow us to have a vacation day. What will you do to preserve freedom?

I hope you enjoy this Everyday Heroes post and that you will share it with your friends and family members.

Joseph Badal is a decorated Vietnam veteran who has written 10 published novels, including The Motive, which will be released on July 19, 2016.