Read the Society of Old Farts of America Creed

A story from Bob telling about a person who had a significant impact on his direction in life.
"A difficult task at best as I truly believe that there have been numerous people at different stages of my life that were instrumental in formulating the direction I would take on the journey of life itself. However, as I try to establish who had the greatest impact and hence most influence on my future
from the time I met him, it would be a colleague I worked with in school.

He was a science teacher/athletic director at a high school in Idaho. However, it was his life history that gave me the inspiration as it relates to a statement he would make toward me later in my professional career. He had been in 9 different foster homes by the time he was 17 years old.
At that point in his life he had had enough school for his liking so headed to San Diego to lie about his age and enter the service. The United States
was well into World War II so formalities such as “age” were not as well documented as they might be today. Soon after basic training he would be on a ship headed for the South Pacific. During his first combat he found himself with a bullet in his leg on a beach heavily fortified by the Japanese. The next 4 years he spent in a Japanese prison camp.The only medical attention during that time was self administered. He collected maggots from the open latrine and bound them to his wound to clean out the dead flesh. According to military records he was MIA and given up for dead in his home town.
Upon his return to the U.S. he obtained a Masters degree in Biological Sciences and pursued a teaching career until his retirement. During my tenure under his guidance in his capacity as athletic director he once made the comment to me that he wished he had had me under his command in the service as he would have made me a “fine officer”. Perhaps it was his pride in the service and the service hardships he had
endured that made that statement have special meaning to me. It gave me the self confidence to pursue leadership roles that I would never have imagined. This man impacted many young lives in his career as an educator. I have often thought it was my duty to live up to the confidence he had in me as an individual.


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