Local Superhero Visits Those in Need

O.C. deputy juvenile correctional officer Yuri Williams receives local and national recognition for his nonprofit, A Future Superhero and Friends.
Photo by Emily J. Davis.

How did this journey start?

I lost my mother to cancer in 2009. For five years, I was in a depressive period. I woke up and said, “I can’t live like this.” I decided to start dressing up as superheroes and visiting children with illnesses, older adults in nursing homes, folks living on the streets. Growing up, Spider-Man was my favorite. I thought, we need a superhero out here.

What’s the most rewarding part?

Being by the side of someone who is struggling—maybe they have a child who is not going to make it to next year. I just want them to know they have somebody to lean on. I have a 14-year-old daughter. I’ve done this trip four times where I travel to all 50 states and visit people. I always ask her permission before I leave, and she says yes every time.

You were surprised on “Good Morning America” last fall. What was that like?

The producer set it up real good. I’m usually the one who surprises people. Suddenly I hear Michael Strahan and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson say my name and a little tear came down. I got to go to the premiere of “Black Adam,” and they bought out a theater here for me to bring people. I invited all sorts of people: children with special needs, houseless veterans.

You were also recently honored by the O.C. Board of Supervisors.

Every time I do a kind act, a bee will land on the hood of my car. Even after the “Black Adam” premiere; it was raining, and a bee still came around. And the day I got the plaque in Santa Ana, a bee stung me in my ear. I like to think it’s a sign from my mom.

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