I firmly believe it is important for children to have a hero. I also believe that children will copy whatever they think is the best in that person. Some kids may have a sports hero and work hard at their own sport because of it. Or they may see Daddy as the bravest and strongest man there is. I've seen very small children copy exactly what their fathers are doing.
My own hero was the girl who got burned in the fire. I can't remember her name and I never met her but to me she was legendary even as a small child.
She had been in a fire as a toddler and had burns covering over 90% of her body. Her face was scarred and puckered beyond anything you'd ever seen, there was no nose or any 'human' face there at all. People and adults included would take one look at her and gasp in horror and turn away. She would see this and let loose an honest and hearty laugh.
She had more friends than any other person in the town. It never got in her way, she never didn't go anywhere or do anything, except swim, because of it. People horrified be her appearance soon got over it with the force and wonderfulness of her personality.
I used to think that if it had been me, I would have been angry at people...and bitter at being treated bad. I do admit that although I often compared my problems with hers and decided I had no good reason to be upset, I never did emulate her. She was too much above me, in my own estimation. She was a star, a princess, a true special person.
I don't know where she is today. I don't know whether the skin grafts helped or not. I only know that if someone is rude to me I think of her and her glorious laughter at any hardship and think. "This is nothing. Don't let this get you down, just remember the girl who got burned it the fire."