What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word ‘hero’? Do images of people wearing long capes and flying come to mind? However, these are just imaginary heroes. We are surrounded by people who have time and again displayed extraordinary heroism. These heroes need to be recognized and saluted. So, we have gathered examples of 6 such people who are real life heroes of the present time.
Real life heroes of the present time:
1. Aitzaz Hasan
In January 2014, a suicide bomber approached a high school in Pakistan. He had 13 pounds of explosives in his possession and intended to bomb the school. Aitzaz Hasan, a 17-year old student, saw the bomber outside the school and instantly tried to stop him. He challenged the bomber without fearing for his life. After some resistance, the faint-hearted bomber detonated the bombs, in which they both were killed instantly. However, he successfully prevented the bomber from entering the school.
Aitzaz lost his life but displayed valor and saved the lives of 1,500 children inside the school. He displayed exemplary courage and selflessness which made him a real life hero of the present time.
2. Christian Gunter
In April 2014, a deadly tornado struck Arkansas. Christian Gunter, a 19-year old displayed remarkable heroism amidst the chaos. He used to manage a home for mentally and physically disabled former soldiers.
During the tornado, he put in all his efforts to ensure that ten veterans made it safely out of the storm. Christian safely transported all the veterans to a church a mile away which was serving as a storm shelter. The home was greatly damaged, and parts of the roof were also torn off. When asking about his heroics, Christian replied, “It’s always our priority to take the best care of them that we can possibly do. Our guys have risked a lot, and it’s a great opportunity for us to help them out”. Bravo Christian Gunter, you just became our real life heroes in the present time.
3. Chen Si
China has one of the highest suicide rates in the world. Many commit suicides by jumping off bridges. One such bridge is the Nanjing Yangtze River Bridge, but people coming here with the intention of jumping might just be saved by a guardian angel. The angel is in the form of a kind man named Chen Si.
He spends a large part of his time patrolling the bridge for people who come with the intention of jumping. He can be named the ‘suicide watchman’ and has saved around a hundred lives. Chen si tries to talk these people out of committing suicide. Moreover, he has also rented a house where he takes those he has rescued to receive psychological help. He pays most of the expenses from his own pocket in an attempt to rescue desperate and depressed people coming to the bridge and return them towards life. Chen Si, truly real life heroes in the present time.
4. James Harrison
At the age of 13, James Harrison acquired a lung infection with metastasized pneumonia. He was required to have surgery for which a large amount of blood transfusion was required. Blood donations had saved his life, and so, since then James pledged to donate blood often.
Amid his donations, it was discovered that his blood contained a rare type of antibody. This antibody protected babies against Rhesus disease, a disorder occurring when the mother and child had incompatible blood types. The babies were at high risk of becoming anemic and developing jaundice. James Harrison then became a frequent donor and became known as ‘the man with a golden arm.’ He has donated blood more than a thousand times and saved more than two million lives. The formation of the vaccine against the disease Anti-D was also based on the composition of his blood.
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5. Ramona Gibbs
Ramona Gibbs proves that heroism cannot just be displayed by adults. In 2011, Ramona, who was six-year-olds, and her younger sister Trixie were playing outside their house in Bristol, England. A car on the road lost control and hurled towards them. The driver of the car was a 94-year-old woman who had pressed on the accelerator instead of the brake by mistake.
Ramona pushed her sister aside and took the full impact of the crash. Her body got crushed between the car and a parked Land Rover. She suffered many injuries, including internal bleeding, a broken knee and leg, bruised pelvis and damaged liver and lung. She had to stay in the hospital for sixteen days and had to undergo five surgeries. Doctors then revealed that if Trixie, who was only three years, had been hit, her smaller body wouldn’t have survived the crash.
Ramona Gibbs received the Pride of Britain Child of Courage award that year. Respect to this real life hero.
6. Dr. Muhammad Yunus
Our next real life hero is Dr. Muhammad Yunus who was born in a village in Bangladesh in 1940. He went on to become an Economics professor and arranged many field-trips for his students. On such a trip to a nearby village, he observed that the poor were trapped in vicious cycles of debt.
He then started to hand out loans of small amounts to the poor and went on to found The Grameen Bank. This bank has loaned around $5 billion and operated in 70,000 villages in Bangladesh. Around 97% of its borrowers are women, whose lives have been immensely improved. This is because most of the other banks did not provide loans to people who could not provide any form of guarantee.
Mr. Yunus has displayed heroism by ensuring that his bank gives out microloans to people who would not receive loans from other banks. Most of the people are poor and use this money to invest in their small businesses. This is aiding them from escaping the grips of poverty. Muhammad Yunus was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for founding The Grameen Bank and establishing new methods of microfinance.
The people mentioned in this article are just a few from the many real life heroes that we have. They deserve our utmost respect and are a source of inspiration for all of us.