Where are the heroes?

What our world needs is heroes. Real-life heroes. Not TV stars, movie actors, sports figures, or politicians - but real heroes.We have seen many examples of heroes since the 911 disaster, yet, we should be aware of the heroes in our own midst. We just need to look around.

I find that in my own life I have come upon people I consider heroes. They are often considered ordinary people. But these are ordinary people whose character shines when a trial is encountered.

The heroes, I know

  • Brandon Rowe, was a young man who served his country in Iraq. He was proud of what he did. He believed in what he did. He was a great example of dedication and purpose. He died in Iraq two weeks before his 21st birthday. Brandon wasn't exceptional in school, he was an average student. In fact, upon the report of his death, no teachers came forward that remembered Brandon. Why? because he wasn't an honor student or a trouble-maker. To those who didn't know him, he was average. But the truth is, when his trial was encountered, he was a hero. For a full story on Brandon, click here.

  • John and Erin L., against the advice of the doctors and knowing the chances of delivering a healthy baby were slim, they refused to abort, and chose to carry their daughter to full-term. The delivery was difficult and their joy was short-lived, as they watched their daughter die less than half an hour later. The pain in their eyes was obvious as they lay their sweet baby girl to rest only days later.
  • Mel B., a man who had not smoked a day in his life contracted lung cancer and underwent extensive and painful chemotherapy treatment. All the while, this man held his head high and never complained. He was a man who had never said an unkind word to another, a man who was always willing and eager to help others. He was a man of great character and will be greatly missed. Mel was a hero. - His wife, Bonnie, stood by his side throughout the ordeal. Always strong, she watched her husband gradually lose his strength and ability to live. Her partner in life was gone and she bore the pain with great courage and strength. She is also my hero.
  • Sue C., suffered years of sexual abuse at the hands of her father. As a teen, she found the courage to tell him to leave her alone and not to touch her again, believing that with his intense anger, her defiance could cost her life. She struggled to live a normal life even though she felt defiled. She felt safe, siz months after he died, but was then besieged with nightmares and flashbacks which continued for years. She never gave up. She always believed in God and prayed that her abuse and life would not have been in vain. She later married a wonderful and supportive man, had four children and devoted herself to helping others. She was a volunteer rape counselor, teenage runaway advocate, social reformist and involved in the school improvement efforts. Yes, she is a hero.
  • Jim F., is a teacher. Not an ordinary teacher, he doesn't work with the average student. Jim works with students that other teachers and administrators have given up on. He teaches night school for the students no one else will accept. The students love Jim. They respond to his teaching style and his honesty. They excel in his learning environment when they were failing in the traditional school. Jim is a hero. He recognizes the worth of the individual and his students respond. He takes "thow-away" children and helps them find their place in society.
  • Kathy Jo, a heroin addict. Katie made many mistakes in her life. She has lived the last six years of her life as a heroin addict with all its complications - stealing, shoplifting, check fraud, experimenting with all drugs, overdosing, phone calls all times of day or night, sleeping excessively, anxiety, aggressiveness, and even overdosing. Her family was at their wit's end. They could no longer afford to help her, they could no longer afford to cover the cost of her stealing from them. They had little recourse. They would have to rely on the court system. And yet so far the court system had let her down. It was years before the court had toughened up and ordered her into treatment. After 2 months in jail, she was sent to a drug rehab center. Two months later, she had successfully completed the first phase of her treatment and was placed in a half-way house. She has been ordered to complete from 6 to 9 months at the half-way house. At this time, she is trying hard, walking nearly five miles a day in search of a job. She has dragged herself up from the depths of hell. Yes, this young woman is also my hero. And frankly, so is her family. They still love her and support her efforts, despite all she has put them through.

    I have been blessed to know a great many wonderful people and this is just a small sampling of some of the people in my life who are my heroes? Who are your heroes?

    Connie Eccles, CEO of ComPortOne

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