When I was a 12-year-old boy, I watched the movie The Magnificent Seven (1960) for the first time. It’s still my favorite western movie, 39 years later.
The story begins with a group of outlaws raiding a Mexican village. The villagers then hire seven gunmen to run the outlaws out of town, which eventually occurs at the story’s conclusion. The story ends predictably with the villagers returning to their daily routine as the heroes ride off into the sunset.
My favorite exchange in the movie takes place between one of the gunmen, Bernardo, and a young village boy who thought of him as a hero. The boy, angry at his father for not confronting the outlaws, calls his father a coward in front of Bernardo. To the boy’s surprise, Bernardo grabs him and exclaims, “Your fathers are not cowards!” Your fathers are much braver because they carry responsibility. I have never had this kind of courage.”
Thanks to Bernardo, the village boy discovered the characteristics of a true hero — as did the 12-year-old boy watching the movie for the first time 39 years ago:
- True heroes don’t require guns; they require grit.
- True heroes expect no recognition from others, only the best from themselves.
- True heroes accept responsibility, endure hardships, and overcome challenges.
- True heroes inspire others, and change lives.
- True heroes do ordinary things with extraordinary love and compassion.
So, who’s your hero? Let us know.
Join FDRHPO and the North Country Health Compass Partners in the celebration of National Rural Health Day by nominating a “Community Health Hero” — someone in your community who has demonstrated outstanding public service toward the improvement of community health and wellness.
A Community Health Hero could be a neighbor, loved one, retired citizen, physician, nurse, healthcare provider, patient advocate, or anyone else in your neighborhood! Try to think outside the box and nominate someone who might not always get recognized for the work they do.
Your nominee (hero) must be an individual…
- working or residing in Jefferson, Lewis or St. Lawrence County.
- who generously donates time and resources toward the improvement of community health and wellness.
- who has shown a level of care and compassion exceeding general expectations of a typical citizen.
- who wears a red cape and can leap tall buildings in a single bound… (optional).
Community members may submit one nomination for consideration before September 15, 2017. One Community Health Hero will be selected in each of the three counties (for 3 awards total). Volunteers from The North Country Health Compass Partners will select award recipients from the list of nominees, and recipients from each county will be announced on November 17th — National Rural Health Day.
Your nomination is helping to raise awareness of the health challenges faced in rural America, and to recognize the heroes who offer their time to help improve health and wellness in your rural community.