U.S. Army General Norman Schwarzkopf is just one of many military men to become an American folk hero.
Time was when "Stormin' Norman," aka "Bear," was a household name. But that was more than 20 years ago.
Now many Americans probably don't remember or never knew of Schwarzkopf's imposing figure or the powerful impression he made on his troops as well as everyday Americans when he led a coalition of armies from 30 countries to drive Iraq from Kuwait.
But Gen. Schwarzkopf, who died last week at 78, was an inspiring military leader who served his country faithfully for decades.
He joined the army after graduating from West Point in 1956 and served in a variety of capacities, including the teaching of missile engeering at the Point, during his long service.
A Vietnam War veteran and a much-decorated combat veteran, Schwarzkopf moved up the ranks and proved to be the right man at the right time in 1991, when Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait. President Bush vowed that Hussein's invasion "will not stand," leaving the details of the removal to top ranking officers including Gens. Colin Powell and Schwarzkopf.
Under Schwarzkopf's command, the U.S.-led coalition swept Iraq out of Kuwait in record time, delivering a punishing defeat to outmanned Iraqi soldiers.
That military campaign made a hero out of Schwarzkopf, who later wrote a best-selling memoir. But he kept a mostly low-profile following his retirement, living quietly in Tampa, Fla.
Military leaders come and go, some leaving a bigger footprint than others because of the times in which they served. Schwarzkopf served in momentous times and did so with honor and skill.