Everyday heroism is a motif. Albom dismantles popular images of heroes in the novel by depicting ordinary people doing extraordinary things. The entire narrative centers on Eddie is an 83-year old widowed maintenance man who dies in an act of heroism. Eddie learns about other acts of everyday heroism from his "Five People," as well. For example, Eddie's father died as a result of his attempt to save Mickey Shea, his oldest friend - despite Mickey's violent assault on Eddie's mother. Albom therefore shows his readers that heroism comes in many forms - and it may not always be obvious.