Have you ever found yourself wondering what it means to be a hero? Or daydreaming of being there in the nick of time to save someone from grave danger? What does it really mean to be a hero and who earns that title? One of our 11th grade scholars from the Gateway campus — we refer to all students as scholars– Natalie Daines, wrote a paper on this very topic. Please enjoy her thoughts below. 

Be a Hero!

Flying down from stormy skies to save New York from a giant sea-serpent, or using x-ray vision to save the world from total destruction, superheroes never disappoint the avid moviegoer. Many fans wish that they could have superpowers to be heroes, too. However, being a meaningful hero does not require special powers, capes, or enemies to defeat. Any person can be a hero by serving, giving respect, maintaining self-control, working ethically, persevering, and striving to be an amazing person. True heroes work to uplift and strengthen others.

Changing the world begins when individuals strive to serve, give respect, and demonstrate self-control in their communities. Simple acts of service, such as talking with someone who is lonely, or helping a younger sibling with their homework, brightens the lives of everyone around and inspires kindness. Meckenzie Roe, a senior at Heritage Academy, shares a line from the film Robots: “See a need, fill a need.” This is a lovely reminder that there is always someone who needs help. Heroes are people who work to fill those needs. Be a hero by serving others, either quietly, or as part of a group project. Service will bring more comfort into the lives of others and an increased sense of purpose to those serving. Additionally, a true hero is someone who possesses self-control and who shows respect for others. Eleanor Roosevelt summed it up well by stating, “To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.” A thoughtful and kind atmosphere, inspired by respectful and self-disciplined people, fosters harmony and joy. Truly, a hero is selfless because they commit to lifelong habits of service, respect and self-control.

Working ethically, persevering, and striving to be an amazing person, are all heroic qualities that strengthen the world. From a worldly standpoint, money is often more important than a strict moral code, and honesty is only demonstrated when convenient. However, true heroes resist these evils. They defend what is ethically correct. Refusing to take the convenient, wrong path encourages others to choose the right also. Nobody is perfect, but valiant heroes do not give up. They persevere. Trials come, and values waver, but true heroes have the grit to endure adversity. Francis Bacon stated,“…good things, which belong to prosperity, are to be wished; but the good things, that belong to adversity, are to be admired.” Heroism requires perseverance, despite hardship. Hard work creates and strengthens heroic character. A true hero is always striving to strengthen others and to be a beneficial role model. At some point, everybody needs somebody to look to for strength. Being that amazing role model is what separates a hero from the world. Macie Gibbs, an eighth grader at Heritage, shares a quote attributed to Dr. Seuss: “To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world.”

So, go and make a difference! Be a hero.