Deputy James D. Paugh’s death in the line of duty is one of the most heroic stories in Augusta’s history. It is also one of its most tragic. Please let’s not make it a double tragedy by allowing careless history to roll over it so that Deputy Paugh and his heroism are ever forgotten.
If I were mayor or a city official, I would immediately use public funds to erect a stone monument at or as close as possible to the sight of Deputy Paugh’s heroic deed – the size of which would be at least equal to the size of his immense courage, sacrifice, achievement and heart.
Human beings truly die when they and their stories are forgotten. This would not happen to Deputy Paugh if a monument were erected. Augusta needs this monument to pay proper tribute to and promote its heroes as best it can. The people in the millions of cars that would pass this spot every year need to know that it is heroes such as Deputy Paugh who make the CSRA great, and that crime and craziness have no safe place here.
More importantly, such a monument needs to be erected as a constant reminder to Deputy Paugh’s loved ones, family and friends of the immense meaningfulness and higher purpose of his and every good person’s life – especially those taken from us way too soon making the ultimate sacrifice. Human beings desperately require a nice place to make peace, remember and recover.
I’m not saying such a monument can in any way make up for what happened to Deputy Paugh, or explain why such a horrible thing happened to such an honorable person. I simply believe the only way to learn from this tragedy and properly heal is to never ever give up trying.