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Who Are Your Heroes? And Are They Real?

By Richard Pounds, Marketing Assistant/Student

As I begin my professional career in healthcare marketing at the CSU Shiley Institute for Palliative Care I simultaneously begin contemplating who I want to be at the end of the day. I am who I am, but professionally, who should I model myself after?

This train of thought is ongoing and hasn’t, as of yet, born any fruit worth eating, but ultimately led me to a new line of thinking as I turned on the TV this morning and realized Comic Con San Diego had started and ended again … and again I missed it! Woe upon the man who doesn’t properly plan!

 comicconHowever, since I’m not one to dwell on missed opportunities, I pushed aside the disappointment and began contemplating a happier subject; my love of fantasy/science fiction.

This was a very pleasant distraction, but it seems today is a day in which I feel the need to analyze everything, so it wasn’t too long before I began critically thinking about why these genres are so appealing.

doctor superheroWhy the love for the fantastic?

At the surface is the escapism inherent in genres based solely in the imagination, but as I dug deeper, I realized at the core of this love of mine is the hero.

The hero exemplifies the best of us, a perfection that we cannot hope to attain in reality because, lets face it, we are all perfectly imperfect. So we create these characters, revere them, and dress up like them.

However, unfortunately, none of these heroes we aspire to be have, or ever will, exist and this line of thought made me wonder what happened to the times when our stories and myths were based on real people; feats of strength and acts of valor were once sung by bards about real people, perhaps exaggerated, but real nonetheless.

Why the shift? Do we no longer have heroes?

I say, no, we still have heroes, maybe not as super as Superman, nor as amazing as Spider Man, but real, identifiable, like you and me. These heroes are unsung. Bards don’t enter taverns with lutes and regale hushed crowds of their acts because they quietly go through their days doing what they do … saving lives.

Who are these heroes?

My heroes are healthcare professionals … you know that man or woman in the scrubs who walked by you at lunch … imagine how many people that one person saved before their lunch break.

Or imagine all of the other people you see when you go the grocery store; your fellow shoppers. Now imagine that one out of ten individuals you pass is a healthcare professional in some capacity. Now ponder how many people they’ve either saved or comforted throughout their career.


I think perhaps the time has come to once again celebrate that which is real and tangible and really makes a difference.

Therefore, I set a task for all who read this: Think about who your real heroes are.

Maybe it is your mom, dad, or another family member. Maybe it is police officers or fire fighters. Maybe, like me, it is healthcare professionals. Make up your own mind about who you think is deserving of the title with one stipulation … they must be real.

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