The Words of the Weber Family

Who Is Your Hero? A story and tribute to my first hero

Ken Weber
October 15, 2010

Even though this is a fictional story, there is an element of truth in it. One of the children in this story is patterned after me. See if you can guess which child it is before it is revealed at the end of the story. So, take a journey with me now to those early years of childhood.

Mrs. Mills was sitting at her desk as the children began filing into the classroom. She stood up and walked forward, smiling and greeting each one. When every child was seated, she walked toward the front of the room and took some pictures out of a folder and began setting them up next to the chalk board. There were pictures of comic book heroes, business people, police, etc. Some of the people in the pictures were men, and some were women.

After getting the pictures set up, Mrs. Mills took one of them, turned around, and held it in front of her as she faced the class. "This is my Aunt Pearle," she said. "She was my hero when I was your age. She ran a foster home for some orphaned children until the were adopted by new parents. I always admired her and wanted to be like her." She put the picture back with the others. "Because of her, I developed a deep love for children. It is one reason that I became your teacher, and I really love all of you."

Mrs. Mills walked forward. "I want each of you to look at these pictures and think for awhile. Who is YOUR favorite hero? Is it a comic book hero? It is a person from your life, such as a policeman, a sports person, or a relative who has influenced you in some way? After thinking for awhile, please raise your hands and tell me who your hero is. Why do you identify with this person? And what traits do they have that you want to have?"

There was a long silence as the children considered the question. Then one boy slowly raised his hand.

"Yes, Carl," said Mrs. Mills.

"I like comic books, and Mighty Boy is my favorite hero," said the boy. "He has super strength and can do a lot of things. I want to be strong like him, and because of that, I have joined the school basketball team."

"Very good!" said Mrs. Mills.

A girl now raised her hand.

"Yes, Mary. Who is your hero?"

"I like mysteries," said the girl. "My favorite books are about a girl detective named Diane Nichols. She solves mysteries and has helped many people in the stories about her. I want to be like her because I like to figure out things and solve puzzles."

"Very interesting," said Mrs. Mills.

Another girl raised her hand.

"Yes, Joan?"

"I watch television, and one show is about a girl names Wonder Girl. She can fly and can cause the weather to change wherever she is. I like her because I am interested in how the weather works and how it affects people.

"Hmm…" Mrs. Mills smiled at the girl and nodded her head.

Now a boy was waiving his hand in the air.

"Yes, Billy?" laughed the teacher.

"My Uncle David was a fireman," said the boy. "He is very brave! I saw him once working with other firemen at a fire. They saved a man's life and prevented the fire from spreading to other houses. He has told me how important teamwork is in anything you do, and that by working with others, you can do great things. I want to be like him! I want to be a part of a team that helps people!"

"Wonderful," whispered Mrs. Mills.

Another boy was now holding up his hand.

"Yes, Carson?"

The boy looked up with tears in his eyes. "I don't have a father anymore," whispered the boy, and Mrs. Mills nodded remembering what had happened to his father. "My mother has raised me by herself for a long time now. She has had to be strong in handling all of the problems that our family has faced. Yet she has always been loving and encouraging to me even in times that were difficult for her. She has also taught me about God and that He is close enough for us to touch. I have always admired her and have always wanted to be like her with the same strength and love that she demonstrated to me."

Mrs. Mills nodded. She then looked around again at the class. "Each of you has expressed something that you like about each one of your heroes. In the years to come, take these qualities of your heroes and try to apply them to some aspect of your lives. In some way, try to be like your heroes.

It is now many years later. Each of the children from this class is now grown, and each of them has followed Mrs. Mills' advice.

Carl, whose hero was Mighty Boy, has become an athlete. He excels at basketball and other sports, and also has started coaching a basketball team for elementary ages boys.

Mary, who loved mystery stories, became a manager who solves problems in a large company and trains employees in problem solving techniques.

Joan, whose television hero could affect the weather, went to work with a group that studies the weather and works out ways of warning people about storms. Her work has helped save many lives.

Billy, naturally became a fireman just like his Uncle David, and using things that he learned about teamwork, has become responsible for designing training and life saving techniques for fire departments all over the country.

Carson, who was so deeply influenced by the strength, love, and religious foundation that his mother gave him, went onto be a writer and Sunday School teacher. Both his writing and teaching have touched the hearts of young people for many years.

Each student in Mrs. Mills' class remembered this lesson about heroes for the rest of their lives, and as a result, each of their lives was changed.

Has anyone guessed which character in the story was patterned after me? It is Carson. (Carson is even my middle name.) My mother was the first of many heroes I have had in my life. Her strength during some very difficult times taught me how to be strong. Her love for me taught me how to love. Her teachings about the closeness of God gave me a personal relationship with God and laid the foundation for me to eventually join the Unification Church as an adult and to meet True Parents. She is gone now, but I still feel her presence. Thank you, Mom! You did a great job!

Now I would like to invite you who are reading this to think of someone who was a hero in your life and how they affected you, changed your life, or brought you to True Parents. It is always good to reflect on things like this.

God Bless All Of You! 

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