ALL of the service people engaged in action are very brave, some are geniune heros.
But yes, the word is overused, by the media.
It is not a good idea to over-personalise the military, not exactly the way to prepare the nation for potential casualties.
Sometimes it raises expectations that a military can do wonders, always get their people out, (a recent thread in many Hollywood movies).
This can backfire when things get rough.
An example, they recently made a film (Behind Enemy Lines), very loosely based on the story of an F-16 pilot shot down over the former Yugoslavia.
In real life, the pilot did as he was trained, sat tight, kept quiet, until the recovery team could get to him.
Not discover mass civillian graves like in the movie, but I've not seen it so no other details, but I bet it wasn't just him lying low, cold and wet.
In real life, the press went mad when the F-16 pilot returned home, photo with the President, the whole works. They said he was a hero.
Arguably he wasn't, he'd done OK not to get captured.
In a review of this film, a commentator sourly noted that when the real event with the F-16 pilot was happening, and dominating the media, a group of French peacekeepers were defending their position against a Bosian Serb attack, they were outnumbered 50-1, but held the enemy off and were saved when re-enforcements arrived.
That was rather more heroic, but not much about it in the European media, and nothing in the US.
Not attacking the F-16 pilot, he did his job and those who rescued him were very brave, but this media/Hollywood overkill is unhealthy, and may rebound one day.
I hope I've got my point across OK!