Webster's dictionary says that a hero is a person noted for courageous acts or nobility of purpose. Superman & Batman were mythical figures when in my youth they were flashed across the screen or in comic books almost daily. Today, every few years they pop up on a movie screen for a brief time. Where have they gone the rest of the time?

Were they real heroes or could it be the single mother who works two jobs to keep her children fed and shoes on their feet? Or could it be the people of our armed forces that put their lives on the line to not only protect our country but every citizen that lives within its borders?

Could it be that a person who runs into a burning building to try to rescue a total stranger is considered a hero? How about the fireman and police who, during the World Trade Center attack, ran towards the disaster instead of away from it? Possibly the person you call on a very cold and snowy night when your car breaks down and does not hesitate to come to your aid.

As you can see a hero comes in any size, color or sex. They are not in any movie or comic book but they are there nonetheless. I believe everyone has known heroes in their lives but maybe do not realize it. Even pets can be heroes if you stop and think about it. From the ones that are trained to find people after a disaster to your own pet, who shows you love and devotion even in hard or troubling times.

I have known many heroes in my life from my mother who raised me through the dark days of poverty and loved me then and now. Also my stepfather who taught me the lessons of life and to work hard and to walk the straight and narrow. He definitely was the Dad he didn't have to be. Even my three brothers who always seemed to help get me into trouble quite a lot were always at my back no matter what the situation was.

Finally my wife who stands by me and works to make our family the best it can be.

Stop and think about your own life and I think you see heroes. Some have passed away, some are still here and some have yet to be born. Proof has it that despite all the cruelty in the world heroes are still here with us.