Teachers Heroes

Zhou Hong Qiong

by Jenna from Victoria

Zhou Hong Qiong
Zhou Hong Qiong

Heroes are born, not created. Real heroes don't wear capes or fly around, but they do however have superpowers and my hero's power is generosity, kindness and standing up for what's right. Zhou Hong Qiong is not only a hero, she is my grandma. Retired and living in Chongqing, China, my grandma is my hero.

Zhou's Family
Zhou's Family

Born in 1935, in Yunxin, Zhou grew up with her sister, Zhou Kai Di, raised by her parents Zhou Zhi Qiang and Zhang Shao Hua but she was mostly brought up by her grandma. Her mother wanted her to have a good future so she sent her to public school. It was hard; at the time money was scarce and you had to pay to go to public school, but education was a must.

Later in her life she became a teacher and realizing how important education is, today she's very thankful towards her mother. In 1956 she married Jiang Jia Jie, who is now my grandfather. Zhou was not only a teacher; soon she found herself to be the caring mother of six. Balancing both her students and taking care of her family must have been hard, but she pulled through.

The majority of her students were the children of farmers, who didn't have enough money for education, but without asking for anything in return she taught them and brought them up like they were children of her own. She really cared for each and every one of her students and tried her best to teach and made sure they did their homework. I believe she was born with a good heart (aren't those so rare nowadays?) as she knew what was right and persuaded others around her. For example she became so good at persuasion that soon the parents of her students asked her to help make their child behave. She would tell the child in a gentle voice "Your parents worked hard to put food on the table, they are working themselves for you. It might not be your favourite food, but there's no excuse for being picky when some people might not have any food to eat at all" and like that, the child ate without a word of fussing. She made such an impact on the hearts of her students that they came back to visit her 20 years later when they've found a job and possibly have settled down. Their hands were filled with payments of gratitude such as money and expensive food, but like the kind person she is, she refused them.

Today she's 78, every now and then she is struggling with minor health problems but I can tell my dad's worried about her. I really hope she'll get better soon, she has so much more to teach me about true humanity. The last time I visited her was two years ago, she was still smiling and caring, she helped me improve my bad habits and made me feel special. She plays piano and paints breathtaking Chinese style paintings in her spare time. She loves arts and crafts and keeps a scrapbook. From the first day I met her, (when I was 11 months old) to this very day she has inspired me to act selflessly and generously. She has inspired me to be the better person. My grandma's a hero in my heart as she's everything a hero could be, caring, strong, intelligent, generous and selfless. I'm proud to be her granddaughter.

Page created on 12/3/2012 12:00:00 AM

Last edited 12/3/2012 12:00:00 AM

The beliefs, viewpoints and opinions expressed in this hero submission on the website are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the beliefs, viewpoints and opinions of The MY HERO Project and its staff.

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Author Info

My grandmother was not a hero. She is one. Alive and living in a small city in China, this is her story.