Friday, April 24, 2015


Elaine snapped this picture of me and the kids back in the ’60’s when we were on a Sunday afternoon sightseeing trip back in the Washington, D.C. area.  There are stories behind every picture and decisions that lead up to those stories. The decision we made for me to participate in an “Administrative Trainee” program of the USDA Soil Conservation Service is what led to this picture. Elaine and I made the decision with very little thought in comparison to its impact. Much of it was based on faith and what “seemed right” at the time. It was an opportunity to advance in my job or be content in a comfortable lower level position. We never know "what might have been” but taking advantage of going into the program, moving to the Washington, D.C. area, completing my college education and advancing into the Civil Service, Senior Executive Service, certainly has “paid off” financially for Elaine and I. We will never know what effect it had on the lives of our children. They had already adapted very well to the move from Seward to Lincoln and actually did very well in adapting to school and life in Arlington, VA. The oldest boy went off to college in Richmond and after interludes in Massachusetts and Nebraska, still calls Richmond home. The second boy came back to Nebraska for his first year of college and decided it wasn’t for him and graduated from Duke. After a stint with the Social Security Administration, he graduated from Indiana University School of Law and he and his family are in Columbus, IN. Our daughter graduated from Appalachian State University in North Carolina at Boone, worked there and got married before coming back to Nebraska. Our youngest son  went to Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA, married, has worked as a USDA Soil Scientist in several states and has been back in Washington for nearly 20 years. There is no way that young people can predict the effect of early decisions but must rely of best judgment and faith. And it never hurts to talk it over with parents because they, too, will be affected by the decision. 

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