Published on Monday, 08 July 2013 00:00
We don’t need a league of superheroes to save the day; we already have heroes in the form of the average Joe or the plain Jane. These unsung heroes do what they can in their own little way to avert calamity and make the world a better place.
1. Homeless Angel Saves Baby’s Life
Where: Oklahoma City, truck stop
When: Night, 11 Oct 2012
A pregnant woman in labor, Keaton Mason, was rushing to the hospital in her fiancé’s car when the baby decided that a truck stop would be a more appropriate place to be born in. They pulled into the truck stop where Mason proceeded to pop the baby girl out of her uterus only to find that she had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck and she was not breathing.
“The lady was screaming, 'My baby, my baby's blue ... she's not breathing,’” a witness recalled.
As everyone else on the scene ran around panicking their asses off and bumping into each other in confusion, a man who was holding a sign that said "Memphis"; stepped forward in all calmness and serenity. As the baby girl’s terrified parents dialed 911, the homeless man, Gary Wilson, disentangled the umbilical cord around the baby’s neck, and rubbed her back to get her to breathe. His former action was pretty much common sense, I don’t think anyone will be able to breathe if they had a rope around their neck, but the latter was a smart move.
“He did everything perfectly right,” a paramedic said.
A worker at the truck stop described Wilson to look like Jesus, “He had the long hair, the long beard. [He was] a very nice gentleman.”
The baby girl who was born at 4 pounds 11 ounces was named Tatum Brown, and doctors declared that she’s healthy.
As for Gary “Jesus” Wilson, he was invited by the truck stop’s grateful employees to have a meal and spend the night. He was gone in the morning; probably back up to heaven, or hitching a ride to Memphis.
“He was our angel that night, that's for sure,” Mason said.
2. Woman Pulls Old Lady Off Railway Tracks
Where: Cameron, New York, train track
When: Evening, 2011
I love old folks, I really do, most of them are really cute but it does not change the fact that old people are slow and dangerous behind the wheel. They are both a menace to the public and themselves when they get into the driver’s seat.
Laurie Ann Eldridge was tending to her garden when she saw a stationary car with an ancient woman in it at a railroad crossing, oblivious to the massive metal monster of a train choo-choo-ing towards her car.
Like a scene from a really cliché action flick, Eldridge dropped everything at once and raced barefooted towards the disoriented 81-year-old. Eldridge dragged the old woman out, rolled down the railway embankment and shielded her with her body just split seconds before the train collided with the car, completely demolishing it.
Eldridge’s feet were bloody and impaled with splinters while the old woman escaped unscathed.
Eldridge, a mother of two teenage boys, was surprised that she was even able to run at all. Before the rescue, she had not been running for 10 years due to a disabling back injury.
“All I could think about was the lady’s face. She looked lost. She needed help, and she needed help right then,” Eldridge said modestly.
3. Scuba Diver Saves Tsunami Victims
Where: Miyagi, Japan, underwater
When: 2011 Tohoku earthquake
43-year-old Hideaki Akaiwa’s neighborhood was 10 feet underwater when the tsunami struck. Instead of fleeing to higher ground, Akaiwa found some scuba gear and went scuba diving. He weaved through the debris in the cold, dark, murky water until he found his house where his wife was up to her neck in water, desperately gasping for air. He pulled her up to surface to safety.
Next, he went in search for his mother when she failed to turn up for days. Akaiwa scoured the entire underwater village until he found her on the second floor of her house where she had been waiting for help for four days.
“She was very much panicked because she was trapped with all this water around,” Akaiwa said. “I didn't know where she was. It was such a relief to find her.”
His rescue missions did not just end there. With all his relatives safe and sound, he hit the icy-cold water again, this time to look for any remaining survivors in need of rescue.
How would you react in a crisis? Would you selflessly risk your life to save someone else in danger? Would you freeze up in panic? Or would you whistle and walk on by?
When the world seems to be spiraling down towards darkness and cruelty, these everyday heroes bring some light back onto Earth, upholding human strengths and virtues. It is the integrities and attitudes of these people that distinguish the heroes from the rest of us and restore faith in humanity.