WASHINGTON – Col. Oliver North is the new president of the National Rifle Association (NRA). With the job he brought his passion for telling the stories of America's bravest men and women that are now airing on NRA TV in the form of "Oliver North's American Heroes."
His first episode profiles a man you've seen on CBN News, Dave Eubank. He's a missionary who uses his US Army Special Forces training to reach some of the world's most oppressed people and share the love of Jesus.
"I met Dave several years ago in Iraq and took an instant liking to the guy," North tells CBN News during a recent interview in Washington.
The pair bumped into each other on Sinjar Mountain, the notorious place where the Yazidi people faced genocide at the hands of ISIS.
North was instantly impressed.
Keeping Company with Heroes
"He's a believer, he's a man of extraordinary energy – he's got his entire family out there – his wife and three lovely children. He's the kind of person I like to keep company with. I like keeping company with heroes. And he certainly is one," North says with a smile.
When Eubank retired as an Army Special Forces officer, he felt called to the mission's field.
He founded the Free Burma Rangers, an army of men and women highly trained to help people facing persecution and oppression in Myanmar, Sudan, Kurdistan and other parts of the world.
Simple Mission: Help, Hope, and Love in the Name of Jesus
The situation in Burma is as complex as it is long. Over 60 years of civil war have left Burma one of the poorest countries in the world. During this time, successive military dictatorships killed thousands of their own people and displaced millions in resistance areas.
Their mission is simple: offer help, hope, and love in the name of Jesus.
"Of course, in the aftermath of ISIS and the horrific murders that were occurring he ended up in probably more gunfights than most people in the Marine Corps or the Army Special forces have been in. He's been there to help those people fighting for the right side," North says.
Eubank is a missionary who takes up arms, rides around in armored vehicles and relies on his highly specialized military training, but North says that's all necessary to perform at the level Eubank is performing.
"I know what the circumstances are like. He would not survive without armored vehicles. If you look at the windshield of his vehicle it had bullet holes in it before he got into the big fight that we've got coverage of," he says.
That big fight happened as the Iraqi Army, backed by US forces, worked to retake Mosul from ISIS.
"The biggest hospital in Mosul had been seized by ISIS and they turned it into a multi-story anti-aircraft position, anti-armor position, sniper position and hundreds of ISIS fighters inside it and they were killing the civilians who were trying to flee and Dave came upon a scene where there was a little girl whose mother was dead, everyone around her was dead, but Dave saw her and said, 'I'm gonna save her.' She had been out there for several days, no water, no food and basically clinging to her mother's clothing," North recalls.
Under the watchful eye of ISIS snipers, Eubank, a husband, and father of three children had a fateful decision to make.
"And I thought, there's no way I'm gonna live through this. It wasn't fatalistic it was just kind of logical. I'm not gonna make it on this one. But then a kid is still there. I gotta do something and I just felt it's now or never," Eubank explains during North's documentary on NRA TV.
"Because Dave is so good at what he does he called on his cell phone to a US Army officer who put him in touch with a Marine artillery battery and asked for smoke to screen his movement. He came up behind an Iraqi tank, you see Dave running in that, Dave can run a lot faster than I can, but I watch that scene and say what an extraordinary act of courage," North says.
Eubank saved the young girl and lived to tell about it.
"If you're not moved by that you need a heart transplant," North says with a big smile.
Eubank's act of heroism caught on camera catapulted his work into the national spotlight.
Shortly thereafter CBN Middle East Bureau Chief Chris Mitchell caught up with him on the front lines and says he found a man in constant prayer.
Fear is "No Longer a Priority"
In his documentary, Eubank tells North, he's not afraid because he loves the people he's trying to help and when you love, fear is no longer a priority.
"Don't be afraid to suffer. Don't think that being Christians means that you're not gonna suffer," he says in the piece.
A man who knows a thing or two about courage, North says Eubank displays the type of bravery on a daily basis that would earn him a chest full of medals if he was still serving in the US military.
"You know the word hero has been much abused in our culture today. A hero can be somebody who catches a pass in the end zone or sets a new Olympic record of some kind in the jargon of our day. The classical definition of a hero is a person who puts himself at risk for the benefit of someone else and that's what Dave does," says North.
"All I am is an Ambassador of Jesus Christ"
As a role model for Christians, North says, you can't find a better man than Dave because everywhere he goes he's an example of love.
"He says, for example, I've seen him say it to others not just to me, 'all I am is an ambassador of Jesus Christ' and without love, which of course the good book is full of love and sacrifice, I mean, this is Biblical stuff and what Dave does, he doesn't just talk about it – he does It and to me that's an even more important aspect of his faith because, look, I've got 17 grandkids. I can tell them something but if I show them something they'll never forget it. That's what Dave has done out there time and time again."
Click here to watch North's complete NRA-TV documentary on Dave Eubank.