LIFE'S LESSONS LEARNED

In his lifetime a man gets to do many things. The longer he lives the more he gets to do. Perhaps he will work at several different companies in a variety of geographic locations and, at each, he may learn some new skills and perhaps will get to discover some new talents he never new he possessed. Each new endeavor will be a learning experience.

The 80 years of my life so far began at Methodist Hospital in Brooklyn, N.Y. when I was born into a poor, but honest, God-fearing, hard working family. My father was crippled from birth, but would never have allowed it to hold him back were it not for the restrictions of a society prone to attach stigmas to anything other than the norm. At sixteen he hopped a freight train in Trenton, N.J. and headed westward to follow his dream of becoming a cowboy.

Among the many words of wisdom he shared with me, as I began growing to maturity, were the following: 

  1. Son, always try to be the best at whatever you do. If you want to sell pencils on a corner, try to be the best corner pencil salesman in the world.

  2. Work is never hard when it is a labor of love. While learning to do what you really love, try to love something in all that you do.

  3. Always use your brain before applying your brawn. Working hard is good but working smart is better.

  4. Always follow your dreams or you are destined to spend your life wondering where they might have led.

His philosophy went with me as I followed my dreams from Brooklyn through...

  • Colorado (1956-1972)

  • Florida (1972-1987)

  • North Carolina (1987-1990)

  • Tennessee (1990-1991)

  • California (1992-2011)

  • Florida (2011-Present)

I see my life so far as one long coming-of-age story.

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