1. Nancy Drew: who impressed upon me at an early age that girls could be just as smart as boys, could handle adventure and get out of tough spots.
2. Atticus Finch: discovered late...but the man to look to for standing up for your principles.
3. General Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain...although a real person, I discovered him in The Killer Angels. A true hero who held his ground at Gettysburg even when the odds were drastically against him. He came back again and again after being wounded to be leader when the Union needed good leaders.
4. Huck Finn: who saw Jim for what he was...a fellow human being and not just a slave or the newly white-washed N-word.
5. Tacy from the Betsy & Tacy stories. Writer wannabe and book lover. Sounds vaguely familiar...
6. Kate Fansler (Amanda Cross mystery series): witty, smart, loyal academic. She has a lot of qualities that I aspire to.
That's all...I'd be reaching to pull out more. They may be out there...but I don't want to force it.