Thursday, November 27, 2014

Something to Really Celebrate: A Ninetieth Birthday.

     Today I had the pleasure to attend a ninetieth birthday celebration. Ninety is an amazing age to reach. When body and mind are in good health it's a bonus.

     I first met Fred in 1969 when I came to teach at a school he taught in. Fred was forty five. I remember when I first met him, and in my 28 year old ignorance, I thought, "This guy's a real old fart." Little did I know  that it could get worse. Fred would have another forty five years and still going.

    Fred was one of those energetic gung ho kind of guys. Fred was forceful and expressive. He worked hard for kids attention and demanded that they work to their potential. He was always humorous and full of mischief.

   I guess Fred liked variety as he went from farm boy to teaching ,to business and back to teaching. Retirement was another thing. He was always active and spent many winters in the south.

    Many community organizations benefited from Fred's efforts and expertise.

   Fred never saw a party he couldn't like. One of Fred's specialties was to recite "the Cremation of Sam Magee." He was good at it. Today he still recited "The Cremation of Sam Magee" He was always humorous and full of mischief. In the days of smoking, he would rush to the staff room for a few puffs during class changes. One day he came back and stood beside me. I noticed smoke rising from some place. It was coming from his pocket where he had put the butt. His language was colorful and I can still remember an outburst. The only damage was a hole in the pocket.

    So today was something to really celebrate. Many more , Fred.

I wore the School hoody for old times sake.