Our country has a great sense of nationalism, particularly when it comes to the military or sports.  As a former member of the armed forces, I take pride in our military and what it has done for our country.  As a spectator, I watch with pride how the freedom in the United States can breed Olympic athletes who dominate time and time again.

But we often lose sight of what else it means to be an American.

Steve Jobs was one such American.  His strength and passion:  Innovation.

I have friends who tease me about being an Apple follower.  Fortunately for me, there is no shame in it.  Their products changed my life, and helped launch my business.  Macs and their peripherals have also allowed that business to thrive.

When people call Steve Jobs a visionary, it is an understatement.  In one third of a century, he completely changed how America operates.  He was inventing even while he was dying of cancer.  To me, that is the wounded soldier on the battlefield who asks his buddies for ammunition and says, “I’ll hold them off” and fights until his last breath.

We see complaints of the unemployed, the underemployed, a wretched economic situation and I realize that not only has Steve Jobs died, but a piece of America is dying.  One of the most important parts.  The part that says, “I won’t be a victim.  I won’t wait for someone to come help me.  I will create my own life.  I will fashion my own destiny.  I will write my own story, and not someone else’s.  I will create, I will forge the path ahead, and I will innovate”.

This is what it means to be an American.  This is what Steve Jobs was to this country.