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A Silent Spark

Essay by   •  December 12, 2012  •  Essay  •  871 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,009 Views

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What makes someone a hero? How about saving a person from a burning building? What about being a single mother and raising five kids with three jobs? These people both could be possible candidates as heroes because they have strength - not just physical strength but mental and emotional strength. Strength is one of the most important character traits of a hero but there are also many more. The other things that are necessary to make a hero a hero are courage, ethics and cleverness. Being a hero means doing what is right most of the time, even if nobody is looking. Heroes are people that are consistently selfless, intelligent and strong.

Joseph Campbell once said "A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than one's self." Many people are not willing to give up there life for someone else. It takes someone with extreme love and wisdom to risk their life in the place of somebody else. In the editorial The Man in the Water written by Roger Rosenblatt the reader is taught that anyone can be a hero in the right situation and that we should learn to always try to help others no matter what. This editorial tells a story of how a man ends up with five other passengers of a crashed plane in the Potomac River on January 25, 1982. A lifeline and flotation ring is thrown down to the survivors and the man continues to give it to the other passengers who are then lifted into the helicopter. Ultimately the man gives up his life to these people when the helicopter carries the last passenger with no room for others. This man never once questioned what he was doing. He was willing to risk his own life for the good of others. Windsor said "In a mass casualty, you'll find people like him. But I've never seen one with that commitment." This man was never identified and yet he has left such an impact in everyone's life because he just goes to prove that an ordinary person can do something extraordinary.

A hero must be intelligent in order to make quick decisions and to do what is best for everyone else. In The Man in the Water the man was incredibly intelligent. This is because he knew he was going to die and he knew that he was just handing his life away yet he was more concerned about saving everyone else. "For at some moment in the water he must have realized that he would not life if he continued to hand over the rope and ring to others." (Roger Rosenblatt) this quote just goes to show that the man in the water knew what he was doing. Also in the beginning of the editorial it was said that the man was described as being alert and in control. This helps the reader to visual that he knew what was going on and yet he was trying his best not to panic even though he knew he could have died at any moment. The man in the water is a great representation of a hero because not only did he do something amazing but yet he did it with intelligence.

Strength can be determined

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