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Some people have the power to inspire through their actions, words and experience. The Australians in Heroes come from diverse backgrounds—some have encountered hardships, others lead by example and a firm belief in what is right—but each and every one is an inspiration to us all.
Heroes contains 15 essays on the people who have helped shape Australia into the diverse country it is. It includes Fred Hollows, Weary Dunlop, Cathy Freeman, Len Hall and Alec Campbell (two of our last Gallipoli veterans), former governor general Bill Deane, the Black referendum leader Faith Bandler, Tom Uren who established the heritage and conservation movement in Australia, Marie Bashir, tennis hero Lew Hoad, Doris Pilkington (of the Rabbit Proof Fence runaway family), Margaret Whitlam (with Gough), cricketers Ray Lindwall and Harold Larwood (gentlemen fast bowlers), Mum Shirl (black campaigner), Michael Ward (Republic campaigner who taught about living and dying) and Bun and Phiny Ung (Cambodian refugees).
Tony Stephens graduated with an arts degree from Sydney University in 1960, after which he worked as a journalist for 49 years, the last 23 for The Sydney Morning Herald. He has won two Walkley awards, including the 2009 Walkley for the 'Most Outstanding Contribution to Journalism', was highly commended three times in the Graham Perkin Journalist of the Year Awards, and received the Centenary Medal for his contribution to australian society. Heroes is his fourth book.