Celebrating Heroes

Navy SEAL With Glass Eye Envisions Winning US Congress Seat

Medically-retired Navy SEAL Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw, espousing conservative principles, has cast his patriot hat in the crowded race for the US House seat being vacated by retiring Rep. Ted Poe (R — Texas). At present, Crenshaw competes against eight opponents.

While serving a third tour in June 2012, enduring six months of combat operations in the notorious Helmand Province, Afghanistan, Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw encountered a fateful moment when an IED blast thrust hot shrapnel in his face, costing him one eye and blindness in the other. You’d think that would be the end of a military career, but no. Not for Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw.

“He was evacuated and awoke from his medically induced coma learning that his right eye had been destroyed in the blast and his left eye was still present, but badly damaged,” Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw’s political bio describes.

Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw dons the Navy SEAL Trident upon his glass eye after losing his organic one during an IED blast in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. (Credit: Facebook/Connecting Vets)

Navy SEALs do not wallow in self-pity. Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw assessed much more work to be done and, despite donning a prosthetic glass eye, had no intention of stepping to the sidelines. So, what does a soldier do in these circumstances? He hastens to the frontline fray. This 10-year Navy SEAL recuperated, refortified, and rejoined the fight.

He recently talked about his experiences and political insights on Fox & Friends.

Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw found himself in two more deployments: One return to the Middle East in 2014 and the fifth/final one in South Korea in 2016. After garnering two Bronze Stars (one with Valor), the Navy Commendation Medal with Valor, the Purple Heart, and many other recognitions…he retired in September 2016 and completed his Masters in Public Administration at Harvard’s renowned Kennedy School of Government.

Given that warriors always have the fighting capacity of a top-notch gladiator, Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw corralled his interests in serving our beloved nation not in camos but in suits. In November 2017, he set his sights on a seat in Capitol Hill, on the GOP side!

In a recent Fox News Texas-affiliate interview, Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw candidly says wearing an eye patch “is not ideal” while also reminiscing his vast military service, telegraphing, “I wouldn’t have it any other way.” That does not sound like a bitter or stuck man, but a military officer whose convictions are galvanized by life experiences and derivations of dignity.

The Crenshaw for Congress campaign delineates passion for “securing our border, lowering taxes, and promoting the ideas that founded our country.” Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw is a pro-Trump, pro-border wall, pro-law enforcement, pro-2nd Amendment Republican candidate.

There exists a uniqueness in Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw. As discussed, he is an embattled military veteran whose sacrifices run deep. Physically, he lost an eye. That defaults to his appointments at the VA hospital, and the first-hand accounting of how the VA has endeavored to reconcile operational and service-provision deficiencies while other woes remain unheeded.

With all the rightly-placed bemoaning of elected federal officials and their “special insurance policies” affording the best health care, regular Janes and Joes (veterans) scrounging for pennies while going without deserved medical attention, is preposterous. Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw says, “If elected, I will keep going to the VA for my appointments, so that I continue to understand the patient experience at VA hospitals in Texas.” No matter the particular locale, he can glean the ins/outs of a health care system which has historically been unacceptable and an outright abomination of “care” for many valiant veterans.

The latest atrocious VA debacle was reported by ArmyTimes.com, denoting how a veteran discovered a surgeon’s scalpel in his abdomen. The victim-veteran’s lawyer, Joel Faxon, called the scenario “an incomprehensible level of incompetence.” Can you imagine going through life with a sharp instrument embedded in your belly? Shows how phenomenally designed the human body is…until it signaled Enough! four years later.


Indoctrinated by a career Navy family, Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw’s spouse, Tara, raises funds for loved ones of fallen service members and for suicide prevention, personifying “First Lady” altruism and humanitarian traits.

Retired Navy SEAL Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw supports his wife, Tara, who annually runs the Marine Corps Marathon to support the Travis Manion Foundation, raising funds for fallen soldiers and their families. (Credit: Facebook/Dan Crenshaw for U.S. Congress)

Much like the work Tara Crenshaw performs using her two feet and in behalf of others impacted by unfortunate circumstances, Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw boasts his ideology of harnessing “the grit and resilience necessary to get back on our feet.” That sounds like a man with visionary purpose who refuses to accept a bad hand in life. The words of a battle-tested Navy SEAL who is confident in sealing the deal.

Crenshaw boasts his ideology of harnessing “the grit and resilience necessary to get back on our feet.”

Heck, even the man on the moon is in the Crenshaw for Congress corner. Renowned engineer and astronaut Buzz Aldrin, who along with astronaut Neil Armstrong descended Apollo 11 and stepped foot on the moon, endorsed Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw for Congress on January 11, 2018.

Medically-retired Navy SEAL Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw, who is running for a US House seat, is endorsed by “the man on the moon,” astronaut Buzz Aldrin, on Jan. 11, 2018. (Credit: Facebook/Dan Crenshaw for U.S. Congress)

Where Dan Stands

“America is the leader of the free world, and should not back down from this responsibility. We can never forget the atrocities of September 11th, and what occurs when you allow terrorists to operate freely in ungoverned areas. We must continue to take the fight to ISIS, not only in Syria and Iraq, but also in Afghanistan and Africa,” wrote Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw.

In that regard, Crenshaw’s last military deployment had him in South Korea, thus lending invaluable insights into the crazed dictator overseeing North Korea and a nuclear arsenal. Dan underscores that “North Korea cannot be tolerated as a belligerent rogue regime for much longer. We must stand behind the president as he builds a coalition against North Korea. However, we should be exceptionally wary of pre-emptive action against North Korea. The consequences could be catastrophic for both American service-members and the South Koreans. No one knows the costs of war better than I do.”

“No one knows the costs of war better than I do.”

Dan also stands with law enforcement and the institutional ability to secure our borders by encouraging federal immigration enforcement agents and local cops to co-opt strategies so as to stem the tide.

Immigration woes and sanctuary cities —certainly a chronic hot-button topic— is also on Dan’s mind. His pitch is “sanctuary cities are an affront to our law enforcement and national security. When illegal immigrants commit crimes, we should enforce both criminal law AND immigration law. Encouraging law enforcement agencies to cooperate with one another is common sense, and good policy.” I look forward to Dan barking that via a bullhorn aimed at the selective-hearing ears of liberals. I surely do.

Dan echoes “the threat right across the border: the Mexican drug cartels. In many areas right across the border, the Mexican government has no control whatsoever. We need to do a better job working with the Mexican authorities to thwart this threat, and prevent weapons and drug trafficking across the border, in both directions. This threat has been largely forgotten by American politicians. That must change.”

I wholeheartedly agree with Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw’s assessment of border security woes and drug cartel violence. However, I do not think American politicians have “largely forgotten” drug cartel threats. Pols are aware, albeit discriminately meek. The sanctuary city scourge is the prime example (vehicle) whereby local cops are strapped by political whims boldly allowing free-flows at borders and within our interior. The list of sanctuary jurisdictions severing cooperation with federal immigration authorities is befuddling.

The sanctuary city scourge is the prime example (vehicle) whereby local cops are strapped by political whims boldly allowing free-flows at borders and within our interior.

Sanctuary city stances willingly fling open the door to illegals and extend open-armed embraces, thereby allowing barbarism the likes of MS-13 and other violent minions employed by drug cartel warlords. Today, the Department of Homeland Security acknowledges it sought legal guidance pertaining to arresting and prosecuting politicians who perpetuate sanctuaries for illegals.

Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw, whose platform for a seat in the US Congress engenders “prosperity and security,” humbly stands with the Humble, Texas assistant police chief in a non-sanctuary jurisdiction. (Credit: Dan Crenshaw for U.S. Congress)

And if anyone is concerned with elected officials who wish to suffocate 2nd Amendment Rights, Dan shares your concern and stands among you. And that is a voice we need in the House. As Dan puts it, “First church, then gun range. Typical Texas Sunday. GOD BLESS TEXAS!” preceded by plink-plink-plink-plink-plink.

Speaking to the zany gun-control debate and elected officials grabbing for our locks, stocks and barrels protected by the US Constitution, Lt. Cmdr. Crenshaw minces no words regarding his 2nd Amendment stance: “Democrats who don’t understand how guns even work continue to propose frivolous and ineffective gun-control legislation in Congress. We cannot allow the Leftists to set the terms of the gun rights debate in this country.  Many states have borderline unconstitutional gun laws. We must do a better job of enforcing current laws, especially background checks, so that guns stay out of the wrong hands. But I will never allow the government to prevent law-abiding citizens from defending themselves.” Ding-ding. That is a winning statement if ever there were one.

“But I will never allow the government to prevent law-abiding citizens from defending themselves.”

SEAL the Deal

“Dan is a staunch Republican and knows the importance of carrying the conservative movement through to the next generation. Dan can no longer fight on the battlefield, but he can bring the integrity, leadership, vision, and tenacity learned in the SEAL teams to fight in Congress for common sense policies that ensure our nation’s prosperity and security, represent our Christian values, and again give Texans a reason to be proud of their leaders,” Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw’s Facebook page denoted.

Just as the nation (the world over) did for “Lt. Dan,” whose battlefield experience resulted in limb sacrifice, we can surely get behind modern-day Lt. Cdr. Dan Crenshaw and the patriotic principles he espoused on the battlefield. A man whose wartime sacrifices in the name of national security transcends bona fide allegiance seems relative to representing Americans in the United States Congress.

“You deserve a lion for your cause,” says Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw, a staunch constitutionalist whose lion’s share of military experience and Harvard graduate degree in Public Administration can readily deploy on The Hill.

It appears a growing number of Americans agree with Buzz Aldrin’s endorsement.

Justine Darbonne said Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw “isn’t your typical politician and don’t have pockets full of money to jumpstart his campaign. He is old fashioned, hard working, and a Veteran starting from the bottom and working his way up in hopes of influencing positive change.”

An “all-around top-notch leader and conservative” said Jason Rowe.

As Mike Nasche spoke of Lt. Cdr. Crenshaw, “Dan has more vision in one eye than the rest of those knuckleheads combined!” Gee, who could Mr. Nasche be referring to?

Take a look at what these supporters are referring to at Crenshaw for Congress.

The opinions expressed here by contributors are their own and are not the view of OpsLens which seeks to provide a platform for experience-driven commentary on today's trending headlines in the U.S. and around the world. Have a different opinion or something more to add on this topic? Contact us for guidelines on submitting your own experience-driven commentary.
Stephen Owsinski

Stephen Owsinski is an OpsLens Content Manager and Contributor. Owsinski is a retired law enforcement officer whose career included assignments in the Uniformed Patrol Division and Field Training Officer (FTO) unit. He is currently a researcher and writer. Follow Stephen on Twitter @uniformblue.

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