Rescuers are first-response people. A cry for help for country, community or a fallen companion is what they live for. In the hour or the moment of need, a Rescuer arrives armed with the resources of caring, strength, and bravery that make all difference. Who can forget the dramatic scenes in the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy; the crews who worked tirelessly to rescue nine Peruvian miners trapped underground for six days; or the local heroes who pulled baby Jessica McClure from a well in Texas?
Civil servants, like firefighters, policemen, EMTs and the military, all have the Rescuer archetype, as do many doctors and veterinarians. Volunteer and reserve men and women for these same organizations have exactly the same spirit. Typical of the Rescuer is that he or she provides the needed assistance and then exits the situation, leaving the rescued parties that much better off.
But rescues don’t always have to be that dramatic: coming to the aid of a sick friend with a bowl of chicken soup or lending a hand to a colleague to finish a project can also elicit the phrase “you’re a lifesaver,” which is music to a Rescuer’s ears.
Oskar Schindler, Tony Mendez, Sigurd Sjoberg
Rescuers are courageous and selfless, throwing themselves into dangerous situations because they genuinely want and need to help, not for fame or glory.
If the motivation to be a Rescuer is not purely archetypal, then the quest for recognition does become a factor. Throw in a bit of martyrdom and the Rescuer becomes a very difficult person indeed.
Helping others, making a difference, effecting change in a difficult situation
- The Forgotten 500: The Untold Story of the Men Who Risked All for the Greatest Rescue Mission of World War II by Gregory A. Freeman
- Report from Engine Co. 82 by Dennis Smith
- The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor by Jake Tapper
- Argo: How the CIA and Hollywood Pulled off the Most Audacious Rescue in History by Antonio Mendez and Matt Baglio
“I can think of no more stirring symbol of man’s humanity to man than a fire engine.” -Kurt Vonnegut