I have been reading people’s response to the gratitude challenge on Facebook. It has caused me to think. And remember.

Monett High School, 1957-1961. I was allowed to play basketball. That is the advantage of going to a school in a small town.  I got to play. I was not very good, but in those days when there were not a lot of good players, I could play. And I learned. Jim Julian, former football star was the coach. And I am grateful to him, even though he fell on me in a scrimmage and broke my back and basically ended my basketball career.

And the Speech Department. I am grateful for it and it’s teacher, Priscilla Bradford. For when I couldn’t play basketball, I could go to Debate Tournaments, I could develop skills at public speaking, I could have leads in High School plays.

And the Jounalism Class. I not only learned to communicate, but I was able to do the 5 minute daily broadcast of the Monett High School news over the local radio station, KRMO. I learned not to be afraid of sharing myself with others.

And the Music Department and BC Bundy. I learned to read music, to sing and to play the trumpet in the marching band. I was in the Jazz band and learned the music of the streets.

And the citizens of Monett who came to the Dairy Queen my daddy and mother owned. I worked in it and i got to see them. But equally as important as my development in interacting with the public was the fact that they spent their hard earned money there and as a result I and all my siblings were able to go to college and to graduate without debt.

I am grateful to Monett and the High School for helping me grow into a person who could contribute as a citizen of the world.