10:40 AM EDT 12/19/2014

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PEOPLE Magazine Awards: Nora Sandigo Wins Hero of the Year

People Magazine Awards

PEOPLE Magazine Awards: Nora Sandigo Wins Hero of the Year

Originally posted 12/18/2014 10:45PM

Nora Sandigo, whose work has a real impact on the lives of families across the nation, was named Hero of the Year at the PEOPLE Magazine Awards on Thursday.

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Credit: Courtesy Aracely Basurto Calderone
Heroes Among Us: A Mom Teaches Kids with Diabetes How to Stay Healthy

Heroes Among Us

Heroes Among Us: Aracely Basurto Teaches Kids with Diabetes How to Stay Healthy

Originally posted 12/18/2014 11:55AM

Aracely Basurto was a working mother of three in Guayaquil, Ecuador, in 1993 when she noticed something seemed wrong with her daughter Andrea, then nearly two years old. Out of nowhere, the toddler was losing weight, urinating frequently and drinking ravenously from water bottles she pulled from the fridge.

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Credit: Michael Murphree
Heroes Among Us: How Gabe Sonnier Went from Being a Janitor to School Principal

Heroes Among Us

How a Louisiana Man Went from Being a School Janitor to School Principal

Originally posted 12/11/2014 03:10PM

When Laci Polotzola walked the halls as a student at Port Barre Elementary in Port Barre, Louisiana, she'd often wave at the jovial janitor, Joseph "Gabe" Sonnier.

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Credit: Melissa Groves
Meet the Nebraska Family Who Adopted Eight Brothers

Heroes Among Us

Nebraska Family Adopts Eight Brothers

Originally posted 11/27/2014 03:30PM

It all began with a phone call that would forever change the lives of one Nebraska couple – and eight brothers who needed a loving home.

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Credit: Melanie Grizzwl
Heroes Among Us: A Former Student Becomes Her Teacher's Caregiver

Heroes Among Us

After 30 Years, Carolyn Denson James Becomes Her Music Teacher's Caregiver

Originally posted 11/20/2014 04:50PM

In 1969, teacher Marty Hayes wrote in the yearbook of one of her favorite students, "If I ever have a daughter, I hope she is a replica of my Carolyn Denson."

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Credit: Courtesy of Lisa Smith
School Lunch Buddies Make a World of Difference for 13-Year-Old with Autism

A Lesson in Kindness: Seventh-Graders Form a Lunch-Buddies Club for Classmate with Autism

Originally posted 11/15/2014 04:30PM

Kansas teen Tate Smith's diagnosis of autism at age 2 sent his mother, Lisa, scrambling for answers. But first came the dread.

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Credit: Jenny Hall
Florida Man Helps Veterans Heal Through Water-Bound Recreational Therapy

Heroes Among Us

Florida Man Helps Veterans Heal Through Water-Bound Recreational Therapy

Originally posted 11/13/2014 05:00PM

For the past five years, Branson Rector has taken veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder out onto the water not just to experience the warm Miami breeze – but to heal and rebuild their lives.

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Credit: Kathy Willens/AP
Utah Father Dramatically Convinces Kidnapper to Set His Daughter Free

Utah Father Dramatically Convinces Kidnapper to Set His Daughter Free

Originally posted 11/11/2014 06:00PM

When Stephanie Edson woke up at 4:07 on Friday morning, her suburban home near Salt Lake City was still. She hadn't heard any noises, yet she knew something was amiss.

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Credit: Xavier Collin/Splash News Online; Scaled Composites/AP
It's 'a Miracle' Anyone Survived the Virgin Galactic Crash, Says Legendary Test Pilot

It's 'a Miracle' Anyone Survived the Virgin Galactic Crash, Says Legendary Test Pilot

Originally posted 11/06/2014 07:15PM

There are a handful of men who know exactly what Virgin Galactic test pilot Peter Siebold endured on Oct. 31 as the company's SpaceShipTwo rocket plane disintegrated around him over 10 miles in the sky, killing his co-pilot, Michael Alsbury.

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Credit: Courtesy Lisa Freeman
Heroes Among Us: Lisa Freeman Offers Teddy Bears and Scholarships to Grieving Siblings

Heroes Among Us

Mom of Fallen Marine Comforts Grieving Families with Teddy Bears Sewn from Soldiers' Uniforms

Originally posted 11/06/2014 03:35PM

It was Aug. 7, 2009, the first day of school. Math and science teacher Lisa Freeman was assembling packets of pens and paper in her classroom at Richmond Hill Middle School in Georgia when she saw two Marines somberly walking down the hall.

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