I think everyone would agree that a great friend (or sibling or spouse) is someone who drops everything when a friend of theirs needs help. I have a great friend who has shown that several times in my life — my wife and I were in a motorcycle accident several years ago (we were fine, but a little shaken up), and the second I called him, he dropped everything and rushed over to meet us at the hospital, then help us check out, then take us the pharmacy to get medicine, and take us home. Never a single comment about whatever he was planning on doing at this time — just there to be friends. He’s a great lifelong friend!
But I was recently thinking that, in addition that, great friends also often have the ability to reach out and help you don’t even know you need help — you’re not asking for help, maybe you’re not even sure you need help, but they proactively reach out to see if everything is okay. Sometimes they sense something is wrong intuitively, or figure out while talking about random other things. But they don’t just wait for someone to ask for help, and they don’t politely wait to help only if asked — that willingness to push into the relationship (which my close friend and a few others do) is awesome, and I wish I was better at it!
(Also, as a side note: If you ride a motorcycle, Dress for the Crash, Not the Ride!)