Heroes: Christian Kapler

Dec. 21, 2005

Coach Steve Alford and the nationally ranked Iowa Hawkeyes will welcome Tanya and Christian Kapler to Carver-Hawkeye Arena Thursday for the Hawkeyes’ game against Robert Morris. Christian is the “Hero Among Us” honoree for the Iowa-Robert Morris game.

Christian was nominated by his wife, Tonya. Here is Tanya’s nomination:

My husband, Christian Kapler, is a solider in the Iowa Army National Guard. He is currently deployed to Camp Shelby, Mississippi, for military training before leaving to Iraq shortly after the first of the year. He will then be gone for at least another year. (He has been gone since October 7, 2005.) This deployment came shortly after we got married on September 1, 2005. So it has been tough on the whole family.

Not that I don’t think that all soldiers are heroes, but him being a soldier is not what makes him a hero in my eyes. I have known Christian for almost two years. In those two years I have seen that man do so much for other people. Christian comes from a family where both his parents are blind. He lived with his mother till the day that we got married, helping her with everything that she needed. When we got married he always found time to help his mother and his father.

Christian and I met through some mutual friends, Ben and Kelly Driscoll. The home is a single income home, so with Kelly home with two young children, it is hard to go places when you just maybe need a gallon of milk or a loaf of bread. Kelly would call Christian and he would drop whatever he was doing and help her. A lot of that had to do with the fact that Ben and Christian grew up together as friends and made a promise to always take care of the other’s family if the other was gone.

My husband and I started dating in the month of July 2005 and the next month we were engaged and the rest is history. The thing that I believe that makes him a hero in my eyes the most is, I came into this relationship with almost a three-year-old son, Jeremiah. Before and after we got married, you could see how much Christian loved Jeremiah. I thought there was no one alive that could love my son as much as my husband. He took that responsibility like he had been his father all of Jeremiah’s life. Christian and I have only been married a little over two months and Jeremiah already calls him `Daddy.’ Christian has already told me that as soon as he can he will adopt Jeremiah. I believe my husband is the biggest hero in my eyes, not only my but I know my, our son already thinks of his daddy as a hero.

Thanks for reading this nomination and I hope that you will consider my husband a hero in your eyes too.

Tanya Kapler, a very proud wife

An initiative of Alford and the UI men’s basketball program, the Heroes Among Us program salutes friends, neighbors and co-workers who are doing extraordinary things for their family, friends or community.

To learn more about the Hero’s Among Us program or to submit a nomination, click HERE.