Posts Tagged ‘hero’

A Life Saved, A Humble Hero

November 19, 2015


This incredible story is from my good friend and chiropractor, Pete L’Allier. Thank God for unsung heroes who are willing to put themselves at risk to help others in need. May we all be so noble and brave should life ask us to be.

I looked at a patient’s X-ray today and told him he had a compression fracture in his spine that had occurred some time ago. He was unaware he had this injury, but I told him it had to have been the result of trauma. I asked him if he remembered any type of trauma that could have caused it. He immediately said yes, but then explained that it was hard to talk about and apologized if he (more…)

This Is What a Real Hero Looks Like

October 21, 2014

Jack Mook

Jack Mook

I’ve always been in awe of individuals and couples who welcome children into their home via foster care or adoption. Thank God there are such people in the world who are willing to turn their own world inside out and upside down to give these children the love and care they so desperately need.

Jack Mook, a Pittsburgh police detective, is one such hero. When he learned why two foster children stopped (more…)

The Strength Will be Given to You

August 15, 2014

We are surrounded by heroes, the vast majority of which never find themselves in a situation requiring them to express their heroic nature. And yet, many of us—perhaps even most of us—would rise to the occasion when the moment requires it. One such hero, Edson Bourn of Jacksonville, Florida, was pushed to the limit and beyond in this intense, pulse-pounding story, which appeared in the August 2014 issue of Guideposts. It’s a powerful reminder that we are all capable of much more than we think we are, and that when we think we have exhausted our resources of courage and strength, they will be replenished if our intentions are pure and our faith intact.

Walking down the beach that day, he was so wrapped up in his own problems he almost didn’t hear the girls screaming

hand-reaching-up-ocean-waterShrieks of joy, the sounds of happy children, reverberated across Rhode Island’s Napatree Beach. Two little girls playing in the sand. But I was barely aware of any of it. I plodded along, oblivious of the crashing waves at high tide. Late afternoon.

I ran my fingers through my wind-tangled hair, as if to clear my head. I’d come to this isolated spit of land on my sailboat, a place to escape. My wife and I had recently separated, our marriage in shambles. I worried about the toll on our boys, just six and eight.

It seemed like forever since I’d heard them laugh. But I didn’t know what to do to make things better.

“Help! Help!”

The girls. I’d meant to tell them to stay away from the water. The currents could be dangerous. Now one of them was in the ocean. Beyond the surf line. I could just hear her screams over the waves. The undertow.Any second now she’d be swept away.

I ran across the hard-packed sand as fast as I could. The other girl was at the edge of the surf, maybe 20 yards away, yelling, all the while wading deeper into the water herself.

“Wait! Stop! Don’t go any farther!” I charged into the waves and was reaching for her when a wall of water overwhelmed us. I clawed to the surface and for half a second I saw her disappear under another big breaker. I dove to the spot. I’m a strong swimmer, but I could feel the current pulling me hard.

Where is she? Splashing. A gasp for air. There. I grabbed (more…)

A Hero On and Off the Field

April 11, 2014

Mariano Rivera

Mariano Rivera

Given the way I worshiped baseball players as a kid, it warms my heart to learn of players who accept the responsibility of being a role model and express it gracefully and with compassion. Mariano Rivera plays that role beautifully.

This article, Exit Sandman: Baseball bids adieu to Mariano Rivera, by Tom Verducci in the September 23, 2013 issue of Sports Illustrated.

by Tom Verducci

Rivera thought about retiring last season, but when he blew out his knee shagging batting practice fly balls in Kansas City on May 3, 2012, he vowed he would not leave baseball on the back of a cart. Knowing this would be his final season, he approached Zillo with an idea: In each road city he wanted to personally meet “behind-the-scenes” people who had dedicated their lives to baseball or had known illness or tragedy. While baseball wanted to say goodbye to Rivera, with the attendant going-away gifts and photo ops, Rivera wanted to say goodbye to baseball, which for him meant all the people who toil in anonymity.

Mariano Rivera meeting the Bresette family in Kansas City on May 11, 2013. (Photo courtesy of John Sleezer/Landov)

Mariano Rivera meeting the Bresette family in Kansas City on May 11, 2013.
(Photo courtesy of John Sleezer/Landov)

On May 11, Rivera met Ryan Bresette, his wife, Heather, and their three sons, Joe, 13, Sam, 9, and Tyler, 6, in the media room at Kansas City’s Kauffman Stadium. (The Bresettes’ daughter, Anna, 14, was unable to attend the pregame gathering because of a soccer game.) Bresette worked as a clubhouse attendant for the Royals from 1982 to ’94 and had never met Rivera.

On March 22 the Bresettes, while returning home from a vacation in Florida, had been standing next to a mammoth flight-status display board in the -Birmingham, Ala., airport when the board, estimated to weigh more than 300 pounds, fell (more…)

Dr. Robert Fisch: Kissing the Cold, Hard Marble

January 3, 2014

Dr. Robert Fisch

Dr. Robert Fisch

I was blessed with a wonderful father and did my best to be the best father I could be as well. So I was especially moved by Holocaust survivor Dr. Robert Fisch‘s tribute to his father in his remarkable book, Fisch Stories: Reflections on Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. Here are three excerpts that capture the quiet heroism of the father and the loving devotion of the son.

My father enjoyed everything life could offer: music, food, theater, playing dominoes, and so forth. He and my mother had a shop that sold poultry and game. He was an exceptionally good person, and he helped so many needy people, mostly children in orphanages. In 1944, when he was 53 years old, Hungarian Nazis took him to a Hungarian concentration camp near the German border. A survivor told me that on the way he gave his food away, saying “I (more…)

Rick Reilly: I Believe in Tim Tebow

January 13, 2012

ESPN sportswriter Rick Reilly

You may not believe in Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy, but like writer Rick Reilly, you can believe in Tim Tebow. Bravo to Reilly for regularly highlighting the positive side of sports and athletes.


Tim Tebow with Jacob Rainey, one of the many people dealing with health problems Tebow hosted at Broncos games this season (photo courtesy of Tim Tebow Foundation)

I’ve come to believe in Tim Tebow, but not for what he does on a football field, which is still three parts Dr. Jekyll and two parts Mr. Hyde.

No, I’ve come to believe in Tim Tebow for what he does off a football field, which is represent the best parts of us, the parts I want to be and so rarely am.

Who among us is this selfless?

Every week, Tebow picks out someone who is suffering, or who is dying, or who is injured. He flies these people and their families to the Broncos game, rents them a car, puts them up in a nice hotel, buys them (more…)

Waking the Wizard WIthin

January 2, 2012

In church yesterday, the minister offered an intriguing analogy that I hadn’t considered before. He used Harry Potter as an illustration of Self-relaization.

At the start of Harry’s story, he was living with a family that treated him poorly; his room was a small closet underneath the stairs. He felt alienated and alone. Life was miserable. Ah, but then Harry (more…)

Dr. Kou Vang: Dentist, Humanitarian, Hero

February 4, 2010

Dr. Kou Vang

I had the pleasure and honor recently of meeting Dr. Kou Vang face to face. I had interviewed Dr. Vang more than two years ago for an article for Twin Cities Business magazine. After the article was published, Dr. Vang was awarded the Minnesota Dental Association’s Humanitarian Service Award in April 2008.

While interviewing Dr. Vang for the article, I was awestruck at the depth of his humanitarianism and commitment to selfless service. If Mother Teresa had gone to dental school, she would have shared a clinic with Dr. Vang.  He is a true hero to the Hmong community and beyond. I cannot remember ever being more (more…)

My Heroes!

January 22, 2009

In the summer when I turned seven, I came out of Capitol Drug in White Bear Lake with some packs of baseball cards. Standing on the sidewalk, I opened my treasures and . . . YES! . . . there was a card of Minnesota Twins first baseman Don Mincher! I couldn’t wait to show my dad!

When I was around four, my mom had prepped me for my dad’s arrival home from work on a day when the Twins played an afternoon game. My dad was a huge baseball fan, so when he came through the door at dinner time, I proudly announced “Don Minser hit a home wun and da Twins win!” My dad couldn’t have been prouder!

My dad and I shared a love of baseball. I used to sit on his lap with my baseball cards, cover up the names and have him guess who they were. We also used to trade initials. “Give me one!” I’d say, and he’d think for a moment, then say, “J.G.” “Jim Grant!” I guessed. If that wasn’t it, I’d go to Junior Gilliam, Jim Gentile, Julio Gotay or Jerry Grote. It was a great game for car rides. I remember getting him twice in a row with “J.C.”—Jim Campbell. I don’t know if he was humoring me or if he was paying more attention to his driving, but it’s a great memory that has stayed with me all these years.

My mom was also very loving and supportive of my baseball mania. I remember her surprising me with a box of baseball cards on a family trip when I was seven (I still remember getting Steve Barber, a pitcher for the Orioles). And it was her idea to take me out of school whenever a Twins player was featured at an autograph session at a local bank (see photos below). I couldn’t have asked for two better parents.

When I was in grade school, Dad went out in the back yard with a shovel, (more…)