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Doyle Glass

Author of the upcoming book Benoist’s War

What makes a hero?

The first thing that comes to mind is a person of extraordinary abilities and larger-than-life personality.  But in reality, most heroes are ordinary people acting in the best interest of others, often in disregard for their own safety.  In the words of renowned psychologist Philip Zimbardo, “… the key to heroism is a concern for other people in need—a concern to defend a moral cause, knowing there is a personal risk, done without expectation of reward.”

Here is a collection of short articles about ordinary heroes.

Elizabeth Barrett

Elizabeth Barrett

For many years Elizabeth Barrett took in homeless and orphaned children to live in her house on Harrington Street in Cape Town, South Africa.  She clothed them and put them through school.  Early one morning shortly before Christmas 2013 she was cooking breakfast when...

‘Get on my back. I’ll carry you’

‘Get on my back. I’ll carry you’

Sitting at the conference table for her morning meeting, Lt. Col. Marilyn Wills suddenly found herself being thrown across the room to the floor. "I was sitting there complaining to myself that, 'This meeting sure is long,' " she later said. "As soon as I thought...

Police Officer Ramon Suarez

Police Officer Ramon Suarez

Known throughout his community as a mentor and leader, Ramon Suarez volunteered as a track coach at St. Matthias Middle School, where his daughter, nine-year-old Jillian Suarez was a student. Officer Suarez and his partner were stationed at the Delancey Street F-train...

Moira Smith

Moira Smith

Officer Moira Smith's first assignment with the NYPD was to patrol the subways. Early one morning in August, 1991, she was just getting off an 8 hour shift when she heard the crash and groan of twisting metal  in the subway below. She ran through Union Square Station...

The Quiet Hero of 9/11

The Quiet Hero of 9/11

27-year-old Jason Thomas was dropping off his daughter to his mother in Long Island when he heard that planes had hit the twin towers. “Someone needed help. It didn’t matter who. I didn’t even have a plan. But I have all this training as a Marine, and all I could...

Lincoln Leibner

Lincoln Leibner

Army Captain Lincoln Lebner was probably the first person to rush in and help the victims of the 911 attack on the Pentagon. Captain Leibner was not scheduled to come in to work at his office in the Pentagon until later that day, but when he saw the second plane hit...