The Things They Carried

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Kiowa

Kiowa is a very unique character in the book The Things They Carried he seems to be the "ideal" soldier. He is very full of life and caring. Even in horrible situations, he knows the right things to say. For example in the chapter "The Man I Killed" Kiowa knows just what to say to O'Brien while he is in shock after killing a young man. "All right let me ask a question… You want to trade places with him." Turn it all upside down- you want that. I mean, be honest." p 126 Unlike Azar who is making fun of the dead body, Kiowa respects what O'Brien is going through and tries to help him cope with the situation. Kiowa goes through as many obstacles and challenges as the other soldiers. "Take it slow. Just go wherever the spirit takes you." p 126. Even though Kiowa goes through many hardships and sees many of his friends die and kill he always stays true to who he is. He stays true to his beliefs as well as his outlook on life. He shows bravery and loyalty by always sticking by his friends. He is caring toward his fellow soldiers and treats them with respect. Unlike Azar who kills Ted Lavender's puppy. Kiowa dies on the battlefield. He sinks into the deep muck of a shit field.
Norman Bowker was a young man when he enlisted in the army, and he only did it to make his father happy by winning a few medals. During the war, he is a brave and great soldier, and he has his medals to show for it. "And his father would have nodded, knowing full well that many brave men do not win medals for their bravery, and that others win medals for doing nothing." p 141. The only reason Norman was so worried about winning the medals was so his father would be proud of him. Most of Norman's story starts after the war is over. Everything he thought would stay the same has changed. He thought he could just pick up where he left off. But unfortunately, he finds out that is not the case at all. Everyone has moved on with their lives and he finds it...
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