Just months after receiving a graduate business degree from the University of Chicago, Mayor Richard Daley’s son, Patrick, is joining the U.S. Army with the full support of his father–and despite his mother’s heavy heart.
The younger Daley, a onetime West Point cadet who left after his first year, signed enlistment papers several months ago and planned to ship out in October but was dissuaded from reporting immediately, according to a family friend, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
“I would bet [his mother, Maggie Daley] asked that he please stay until Christmas,” said the friend, who reported that the mayor’s wife remains upset about her son’s decision to join the military at a time when violence rages in Iraq and U.S. troops also face danger daily in Afghanistan.
But the mayor said Tuesday he never tried to talk his son out of taking the course that, at age 29, he has selected for himself.
“If he wants to do it, he is going to do it,” Daley said. “I am very proud of his decision, and I stand by his decision. … Duty, honor and country. That is what he wants to do.
This is Big News. And not only because Patrick Daley, like thousands of other young Americans, is demonstrating that he has a dramatically different point-of-view and priorities than his parents (the word going around around here is that his parents are not one bit happy with his decision).
Patrick Daley is Democratic Party royalty. Things being what they are in Chicago with no viable Chicago Republican Party and the overwhelming popularity of the Daley name as Richard M. Daley’s only son he’s all but guaranteed the mayor’s office in the fullness of time. But, as his dad said, he’s decided to risk it all and do the responsible, honorable, and patriotic thing.
And he’s doing it the hard way by going in as an enlisted man when he could easily have received an officer’s commission. He’s going into an airborne unit.
I don’t want to take one thing away from this fine young man. But if you’re looking for signs of life and hope for the Democratic Party, this is it.
UPDATE: Welcome Instapundit readers and thanks, Glenn. While you’re here have a look around. I post on quite a variety of subjects. You may find something you like. Or fruitcake.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Despite Blackfive’s report I haven’t found evidence that Patrick Daley is a Republican. I’ve found lots of evidence that he supported George Bush’s re-election. It’s not the same thing. I would very much appreciate anyone who can direct me to some actual evidence.