This I Believe

Chris - 94588, California
Entered on July 26, 2007

Heroes can be ordinary people

I believe in heroes, and certainly epic tales of bravery are not unique to fictions. Although we may sense frequent turmoil in our society, we can still find order among mundane chaos and misery other than in the fictional world. There is still genuineness on earth and true heroes do exist to aid others. These heroes are real and they have been pushing our world forward throughout history.

We have all heard about great people, such as those that invented cures for diseases, those that helped promote world peace and many others. No doubt that these are great heroes deserved to be honored, but at the same time I believe that heroes are not titles reserved exclusively for people with significance or fame. Heroes can be living humbly among us, and we do not need to look far to find ordinary people making great contributions. People providing shelters for orphans and mothers who risk everything for their children are only a few examples. There are so many of them that we are bounded to encounter them in our lifetime.

I am a rather forgetful and careless person. Once I left my wallet, passport, green card and all my identification documents on a bus in Hong Kong. I did not even notice the urgency until long after I got off the bus. When I could not find anything on the bus, the driver suggested me to check the lost and found section in the bus terminal and I dragged myself there with little hope. Fortunate for me, a man returned all my belongings to the bus terminal and I was both delighted and surprised to see that not even a single dollar is missing. If I were to loose these documents, I would be stuck in Hong Kong for at least a month and I could not afford such delay as I planned for college.

When I told people my story, they said I was extremely lucky because many never saw their lost items again. I was indeed blessed, but at the same time I believed that there was more than luck to it. Whoever saw my belongings could have just taken them because he had no obligation to act. But instead, he decided to contribute his time to help out a total stranger. I respected this person as a hero because he upheld his principles while there was no enforcement. When people uphold their principles, they inspire others to act alike and thus become heroes. Likewise, I would recall this incident in similar situations and do the same unto others. Such events help build our characters and compose who we are. Therefore everyone should endorse their principles as it will cast hope and light onto others.

Of course heroes are not flawless and they still make poor choices at times. They are still flesh and bone after all, and the existence of their mortality is undeniable. However, by overcoming their past mistakes and changing themselves, these people thus are transformed into heroes.