Simply Superheroes Blog

The Making Of A Superhero

Simply Superheroes Blog – The Making Of A Superhero



It was the summer of 1972 and I was ga-ga over Superman.

My favorite clothes were my Superman pajamas and a white cloth cape tied around my neck (see above photo).

During that summer, my family and I escaped the heat in Queens to the Pennsylvania Poconos for several days.

We stayed at a rental cabin that was part of a larger vacation community that consisted of a swimming pool, shuffle board, tennis courts and volleyball court.

It had rained hard the afternoon we arrived. Most everyone staying there had already resigned to make this an "indoors day" since everything outside was drenched.

In hindsight, my parents regretted letting their 3 1/2 and 5 year old kids run off and explore the cabin grounds while they unpacked their car.

As usual I wore my Superman get-up and took with me a small, plastic pail and shovel.

In our exploration, I collected rocks in my pail that I would scoop with my shovel: dig, scoop, dump.

We walked around, my head down in search of good-sized rocks.

At last I found a large rock. I placed it on my shovel and lifted it up. But its weight was too much for my shovel and dropped.

Only it didn't hit the ground. It fell into the swimming pool with a splash.

I watched it get smaller at the corner of the deep end.

I wanted the rock. I was Superman. So I went after it.

I remember being underwater, flapping my arms, being surrounded by bubbles and swallowing water.

My sister couldn't swim yet.

She looked around and spotted an older boy walking out of a cabin.

She told him what had happened.

The boy ran to the pool and saw bubbles surfacing.

He threw off his shirt and jumped into the pool and pulled me out.

I remember crying all the way back to the cabin.

"Dad," my sister said. "Derek is wet."

After getting the details from my sister, my Dad went looking for the boy.

He found him with his family.

They were packing up to leave for their long drive home in Maryland.

My Dad offered them all of the money in his wallet. But the father of the boy refused.

My Dad took off his watch, the one my grandfather wore until he died of a heart attack in 1948.

Again, the father refused.

Besides kissing and hugging the boy, he wanted to give him something, anything.

The father explained that his son, as a scout, had just learned the principle of doing something for others without receiving anything in return.

He explained that what he learned would be ruined if he received anything for saving me.


To the boy who saved me, wherever you are - thank you.




It was the summer of 1972 and I was ga-ga over Superman.

My favorite clothes were my Superman pajamas and a white cloth cape tied around my neck (see above photo).

During that summer, my family and I escaped the heat in Queens to the Pennsylvania Poconos for several days.

We stayed at a rental cabin that was part of a larger vacation community that consisted of a swimming pool, shuffle board, tennis courts and volleyball court.

It had rained hard the afternoon we arrived. Most everyone staying there had already resigned to make this an “indoors day” since everything outside was drenched.

In hindsight, my parents regretted letting their 3 1/2 and 5 year old kids run off and explore the cabin grounds while they unpacked their car.


As usual I wore my Superman get-up and took with me a small, plastic pail and shovel.

In our exploration, I collected rocks in my pail that I would scoop with my shovel: dig, scoop, dump.


We walked around, my head down in search of good-sized rocks.

At last I found a large rock. I placed it on my shovel and lifted it up. But its weight was too much for my shovel and dropped.

Only it didn’t hit the ground. It fell into the swimming pool with a splash.

I watched it get smaller at the corner of the deep end.

I wanted the rock. I was Superman. So I went after it.

I remember being underwater, flapping my arms, being surrounded by bubbles and swallowing water.

My sister couldn’t swim yet.

She looked around and spotted an older boy walking out of a cabin.

She told him what had happened.

The boy ran to the pool and saw bubbles surfacing.


He threw off his shirt and jumped into the pool and pulled me out.

I remember crying all the way back to the cabin.

“Dad,” my sister said. “Derek is wet.”

After getting the details from my sister, my Dad went looking for the boy.

He found him with his family.

They were packing up to leave for their long drive home in Maryland.

My Dad offered them all of the money in his wallet. But the father of the boy refused.

My Dad took off his watch, the one my grandfather wore until he died of a heart attack in 1948.

Again, the father refused.

Besides kissing and hugging the boy, he wanted to give him something, anything.

The father explained that his son, as a scout, had just learned the principle of doing something for others without receiving anything in return.

He explained that what he learned would be ruined if he received anything for saving me.


To the boy who saved me, wherever you are – thank you.


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