Young Heroes

Connie Dowker from Kingston, Tennessee, writes about her son, Jaret Dowker:

It was 8:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning. Two-year-old Jaret kept running from the bathroom to his daddy, and back to the bathroom. He was excited about something. When his father went to investigate he found that the exhaust fan in the bathroom had caught fire. His father put the fire out.

I believe Jaret saved our house from burning down and not only saved his own life but those of his dad and his baby sister. ************************************************************

Diamond Hicks and Kelli Lyons are best friends:

Diamond says, "Kelli is my hero because I love her. She makes me laugh." Diamond loves Arthur because he lives in the TV, he lives in books and I like to read his books." My favorite friends in Arthur are DW and the Baby.

Kelli says, "Diamond is my hero because she loves me and she likes me and she makes me laugh and she makes me fall down laughing and she makes me pick up keys and she makes me pick up numbers and she makes me pick up my voice." Kelli loves Arthur because he likes us and I love him.


Jeni Stepanek from Upper Marlboro, MD USA wrote to MY HERO about her son Mattie. My Hero is my son, Mattie Stepanek. Through Mattie's innocent and uncensored expressions about life as he sees it, and feels it, and thinks about it, I have been inspired to think more deeply about my own life. Sometimes, it takes the wisdom of a child, for us to really appreciate what we DO have in life, and to remember to celebrate the gift of every day.

Jessica Mathia from Barnsdall, OK USA - wrote my hero is my son Ethan. He is my hero because he came into my life at just the right time. Because of him I wake up every morning knowing that I have a reason to live and do my best in school so I can get a good job and give him a great life. I love my son more than anything I do not know where i would be without him.

Amy Salema from West Warwick, Rhode Island usa wrote my hero is Zachary Nieman. He is my ten year old son who saved my life while I was driving in the car with him as i am undergoig interferon treatments for 48 weeks. he jumped out of the car stopped traffic borrowed a cell phone called 911 then his father and brothers he knew everything the rescue team needed to know to save my life.

Michael D. Pinho Sr. from Kapolei, Hawaii USA - wrote: my hero is Rochan E. Pinho. Rochan is 11 years old and has inoperable cancer both in the brain and in the spine, after the september 11th tragedy he took it upon himself to make and sell patriotic buttons to help the children of the victims of the disaster, he has been in all of the newspapers as well as on the Rosie O'Donld show, he has raised to date close to $24,000 and continues to do so in his words "I know that there is people who is suffering more than I am, so I will help and give everyone a part of my life." Rochan was presented with a flag that flew over ground zero in New York from the Governor. Rochan has to have a very delicate operation to his spine and yet he continues with his unselfish efforts to help others. stories about him can be read at do a simple search for his name Rochan Pinho and there is articles to be read also at Thank you. Michael D. Pinho

Pauline Tibbertsma from Gold Coast, Queensland Australia wrote: my hero is Iqbal Masih. Iqbal Masih was four years old when he was bonded to the village carpet maker. A sickly child, he spent much of the next six years chained to a loom, which he worked fourteen hours a day, six days a week. He was fed just enough to keep him functioning, and was beaten more often than the other children at the workshop, because, unlike them, he defied the master time and again, refusing to work and on occasion attempting to escape. For punishment children were often hung up by their ankles and caned. Stories are told of situations where, when a child cut himself with the sharp tools, the loom-master shaved match heads into the wound and set the sulfur on fire. He didn’t want the child’s blood staining the carpet.

At ten, Iqbal managed to escape and secured help from the BLLF, who gave him a place in a primary school. However, he did not forget those he had left behind. Iqbal instead began to help the anti-slavery movement. At 12 he had helped liberate 3,000 children from bondage. He was subsequently honored by the International Labor Organization, in Sweden; Reebok, presented him with its prestigious Human Rights Youth in Action Award (for "his courage and ingenuity in righting a centuries-old wrong") in Boston in December of 1994; ABC News, featured him as its Person of the Week. During this television session he reminded the world that "the world's two hundred million enslaved children are our responsibility."

In Pakistan, Iqbal was not popular amongst the politicians and industrialists. They smeared his name and frequently threatened violence that the boy dismissed, saying grown men would only harm a child as a last resort.

That time came. On the evening of April 16, 1995, Easter Sunday, Iqbal Masih was shot dead while visiting relatives in a rural village. The police reported it as a chance occurrence, although his father insisted a conspiracy.

The murder was never solved.

Still, Iqbal's memory will never die in my mind for truly I can say that never has a story filled me with such purpose and such shame at the same time. This young boy inpsired nations because he dared to dream, he dared to fail and he dared to try again. For that, Iqbal Masih - the late 12-yr-old carpet weaver from a country on the other side of the world - will be, eternally, my hero.

Jacob Carson from Albany - wrote: My Hero is my little brother. he's 11 years old and has down syndrom. He goes to a public shcool and is teased about it by other children every day but he doesn't care. He just ignores them and keeps going. He is the most joyful pearson I know.

Danie & Shane from Angleton, Texas USA - wrote" my hero is Mattie and my son Shane. Mattie and Shane have two different forms or MD but they are both my heros. Shane has Duchenne MD. I have all of Matties books and read them to Shane at bedtime. When I found out my own child had MD I was devestated, but with Matties amazing poetry I was able to accept it. I now fundraise for MD and started a group Butterfly Kisses for MD and am attending college to be a Physical Therapist. Thank you Mattie for helping me realize to live life to the fullest for myself and my son.

Samantha from Arlington, WA - wrote: my hero is my daughter JadeLynne. I admire Mattie and his mother because of their courage, strength and determination. It reminds me of my daughter and what we are going through with her illness. Mattie I hope you get your wish to live to 101! Ill light a candle for you love.

You see my daughter JadeLynne has a rare dwarfism and like Mattie has been in and out of the hospital. Unlike Mattie she was diagnosed before she was even born. She is very small and her breathing problems are getting worse. Unlike Mattie a ventilator will not work for jade. Her organs are too large for her tiny little skeleton. We are hoping for a miricle this year, we have been hoping for a miricle for 5 years. Of course she creates a miricle every time she smiles. Shes only 5 but can not go to school this year because if she gets sick it could kill her. She loves to watch as I sew and make doll and also loves to draw. She is being granted a wish by the make a wish foundation. Its a wonderful thing. Of course I have a few wishes too. I think all of us that have children like mattie and Jade end up with some extraordinary wishes.

Do you know of a child who should be honored? If so, please sign the MY HERO guestbook. Who is your child hero?

Page created on 11/19/2002 9:58:48 AM

Last edited 11/19/2002 9:58:48 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.

Related Links

Cartoons for Children's Rights initiative that aims to inform people around the world about child rights. - a UNICEF broadcast initiative that aims to inform people around the world about child rights. S
Convention on the Rights of the Child

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Author Info

In honor of UNIVERSAL CHILDREN'S DAY the My HERO staff has selected several entries from our guestbook about children who are heroes.

Do you know a child that has made a positive difference in their community? Do you know a child that you would like to honor for their courage ?