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The Legend of Hans Wolfe

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Hans Wolfe is my great grandfather. He came from Denmark in the early 1900’s and displayed several positive qualities, including his kindness, compassion, and bravery. He rode on a boat from Denmark, coming to the United States for a better life. About mid-way to the United States, their boat was ceased by pirates. Hans and several others hid on the boat, because there was no other place to go.

One of Hans’ fellow unwelcome shipmates was named Simon. His parents had been killed, and he was a young boy, probably around age seven. Obviously the young boy was terrified. He did not know anyone else on the ship, and did not want to be found. There was also the matter of starvation, and terrible disease on the ship. Hans noticed the boy hiding in a nook close to where he was. He saw the boy’s discomfort and went over to console him. Hans began looking after this boy for weeks, which was extremely courageous because they had a greater chance of being caught. They managed to remain hidden the whole time, and Hans salvaged some scraps of food for him and Simon, although it was only enough for survival.

The men were eager to leave the ship, as the arrival to the United States was drawing near. They were to arrive in New York where Hans dreamt of making a new life and Simon was going to live with an aunt. But an unexpected twist came, a bad one. Simon had caught a deadly disease most likely from some meat he had eaten on the ship prior to this. Hans would have it too, but he gave most of his food to Simon. Hans knew that he could not leave Simon to be taken care of by an aunt who he has never met, and who he knows nothing about. Hans made the kind decision to look after Simon. Hans got a job at a bakery, and got a small place for him and Simon to live. The disease began to run its course, but Hans took very good care of Simon. Against all odds, Simon overcame his terminal disease but continued to live with Hans until he turned eighteen. Simon went on to accomplish many wonderful things in his life, such as becoming the governor of New York, winning countless awards for his work with the poor, and many other things. Simon never would have made it if Hans had not helped him. Hans risked his own life for a young boy whom he did not know when he arrived on the ship. This man had extreme kindness and courage, which therefore qualifies his story to become a legend.





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