There was no time that I can recall where I had a specific hero in my life; at least not the kind of hero that is defined by the dictionary. This does not mean that I don't admire certain people, which I do. However, I learned long ago not to put these people on too high a pedestal since over time their actions or words have taken them down a peg or two. Then again, maybe it's the word "hero" that must be examined.
For me, "hero" is defined by someone who is willing to sacrifice time, money and praise by doing what he or she believes will improve his or her surroundings. It is the person who protests wrongs, fights for the rights of others, and risks being censured, not only by society, but by "friends" and family. A hero is someone who isn't afraid to acknowledge they were wrong while learning from past mistakes. A hero is someone who challenges the status quo without the use of violence. A hero is one who is content being in the background without any need for acknowledgment while working to defend those who have no voice.
With that definition in mind, perhaps instead of looking outside of ourselves, we should seek to step up to the worthwhile challenge and be our own hero.