Staff writer - Latoya Wakefield

No matter where you are, who you are or what you did, we all have heroes. A hero can range from someone who gave you bus fare to go home (when your pay didn’t reach the ATM and you didn’t have a dime in your name) to someone who changed lives, lifted hearts and inspired people to make a change such as Martin Luther King, Marcus Garvey, Ali Mohammed, Michael Jackson…

On October 17, 2011 Jamaica will be celebrating Heroes day. On this day, not only do we appreciate our National Heroes who made tremendous sacrifices but we will also show our gratitude to those people who made a difference in our lives no matter how small it is because as they say ‘sometimes a small parcel goes a far way’.

Recently we lost a hero of the computer world known as Steve Jobs, a great innovator and technically a genius. Because of him, many people are enjoying the wonderful Apple. I’ve read so many stories of people he inspired. His works encouraged others to ‘think outside the box’. He demonstrated to the world that you should never be afraid to be great. He will always be remembered.

Famous Martin Luther King

Another non-national hero that comes to mind is Dr. the Hon. Louise Bennett Coverley (Miss Lou) who died in 2006.  Our popular language, Patois is known as the ‘language of the illiterate’. It is a mixture of many languages mainly African and English. Other than locals, many cannot understand the language and therefore it is highly recommended that locals know and practice English.

Many were not opened to Patois even being a language and therefore they put it down until Louise Bennett raised the bar and made people recognize that our language is unique. She told stories of our culture through Patois. Because of her, Patois became an art hence many others were influenced to follow her footsteps. We’ll never forget you Miss Lou.

Visionary Steve Jobs

Some of our greatest heroes are our everyday heroes such as our policemen, fire-fighters, pastors, teachers, nurses, doctors and our most common hero, well heroine, our mothers. In the Caribbean, single parent homes are dominant with the mother being the sole provider, the nurturer, the teacher, the disciplinarian. Our mothers have to take on so many roles and mom is just one individual. Our mothers are our heroes for life and we should never take them for granted.


On Heroes’ Day, let’s not just honour our national heroes but those who are in our lives everyday contributing to who we are. Let’s honour that stranger who made your day better. Let’s honour that guardian who brought your school books. Let’s appreciate those who stand by our sides through thick and thin. Let’s start saluting all our heroes and heroines today whether they did something big or small. Most of all, let us all honour God, the greatest hero of all.