I spent September 14th, 2001 at the Salvation Army in NYC a couple blocks away from Ground Zero and it changed my life forever. I had spent all week with horrible thoughts and images seared into my brain and knew my only hope of healing them was to find something positive to do in the face of the devastation. My wife and I arrived at the Salvation Army building before dawn with a vehicle full of supplies and were allowed to stay and assist for the whole day. By 9AM there were hundreds of volunteers forming lines to help. Seeing the outpouring of selflessness in the city changed my life and ultimately accomplished the healing I needed. I became addicted that day to wanting to help others. I had a BA in Psychology that I had never utilized and decided to make a change. When I returned home, I gave my notice to my employer and started working in an Inpatient Psychiatric Facility in Pembroke. I later worked as a Residential Counselor in an Adolescent Group Home in Attleboro. I currently work in a Residential Group Home for Adults with Psychiatric Disabilities. When I moved to Lakeville to raise my daughters, I wanted to find a way to get involved with service in the community. As I looked around for opportunities, I saw the Lions everywhere… cleaning the islands, having a presence at the Lakeville Arts Festival, helping at the COA, raising money and giving to charity through the golf tournament, etc. I knew I wanted to be a part of that selfless giving in the community. When I was approached by some Lions at the Lakeville Arts Festival, I got all of the information I needed to help me on my way. That is how I became a Lion.
My interest in community service can be traced back to October 1986 when I started working at the Wareham Free Library. Little did I know that this part time high school job would turn into a career as well as sparking my interest in community affairs. Public libraries are hubs for their respective communities, allowing me to meet people from all walks of life. In all the towns I have been fortunate to work in, Wareham, Dartmouth, Foxboro, Medway and now Bourne, my jobs have provided me opportunities to work with everyone, from the very young to the very old. they have also introduced me to many community groups and town committees. When my wife Tracy and I moved to Lakeville in 2008, it was important for me to become involved with my new adopted hometown. Within the first couple of years, we joined the Y and I was appointed to the Open Space Committee. At the Lakeville Art and Music Festival, I was able to spend time at the Lions booth and hear all the great things this group does. I was sold. In my free time, I am a part time kayak instructor and have been since 1998. My wife and I also love to travel, ski and be outdoors with our two crazy rescue dogs.
I became a Lakeville Lion through my friendship with Gerry White. In 1982 I began my sixteen years serving on the Lakeville Finance Committee, followed by twelve years as a Lakeville Selectman. On both committees I had the privilege of serving with Gerry, who informed me about the service commitment of the Lions and, eventually, sponsored me when I joined the club in 1992. When my wife and I moved to Lakeville 42 years ago, it was a big change from city life in Boston, where we had both grown up. We quickly learned what a special community we have here. Our four children were raised in Lakeville, attended the public schools and participated in youth and high school sports. Involvement in our children’s activities brought more opportunities for volunteering and demonstrated that this town has many dedicated, involved citizens in so many different areas. Now that the children are grown and I am retired, I am enjoying the opportunity to be more involved in the Lions Club.
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