A hero is defined as someone who is idealized and admired for their courage and strength. Heroes range from policemen and school teachers to parents and firefighters. Few other professions meet the criteria of hero more than firefighter. Not only do they spend countless hours away from their family, but they put their lives on the line each and every day. Below are the stories of five amazing firefighters who risked life and limb in an effort to save the lives of their fellow man:

Timothy Stackpole

Timothy Stackpole had been serving as a firefighter for 21 years before he lost his life while putting out a fire on September 11, 2001. He had just got promoted to captain the day before he lost his life. He was one of 343 firefighters killed after the Twin Towers collapsed.

Even though Stackpole is gone, his legacy lives on. Stackpole's friends and coworker stated that his two main passions were fire and family. His wife also stated that being a firefighter was part of his calling.

Robert Diaz

Many people panic and lose their ability to think rationally when a fire strikes. However, Robert Diaz knew just what to do when an apartment caught on fire. He went inside of the apartment and rescued an 11 year-old boy. He got tangled in between cable wires and telephone lines, but he still managed to escape with the little boy.

Jason Furbin

Any firefighter will tell you that firefighters are never really off the clock. They often have to put out fires when they are not working. Such was the case with Jason Furbin. Furbin was enjoying his day off when he noticed a building start to catch on fire. He dialed 911, ran up 28 flights of stairs and rescued an unconscious woman. He then carried her back down the 28 flights of stairs. His selfless act earned him the praise of his community and major political figures. Despite his heroic efforts, Furbin downplayed his heroics saying that he simply did what anyone would do put in a similar situation. While this is surely difficult to believe, Furbin’s humble nature is typical of many firemen.

James O'Brien

Firefighters use special equipment in order to reduce their chances of suffering a serious injury. However, they sometimes take off their equipment to help people. James O' Brien risked his life by taking off his breathing mask and giving it to a man who was barely-breathing. The man had lost consciousness when his kitchen caught on fire.

Joe St. Georges

Firefighters not only save human lives, but they can also save animals. Joe St. Georges captivated Los Angeles as he managed to rescue a dog before it drowned. He jumped into the water, grabbed the 6 year old German Shephard and then swam it out of the water. While Georges sustained a minor cut to his thumb during the rescue, both rescuer and dog suffered escaped unharmed. Joe St. Georges was heralded a hero by not only his community, but the nation at large.

Firefighters definitely deserve to be called heroes because they often put saving others before their own personal safety.  They demonstrate courage that is all too infrequent in today’s society. While they often do not get the recognition they deserve, they perform their duties with a sense of selflessness that is simplyunequalled by most professions. Joe St. Georges, James O'Brien, James Furbin, Robert Diaz and Timothy Stackpole are just a few of the many heroic firefighters.

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