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Friday, July 19, 2013

It's All About the Kids..

As an 8 year old boy, growing up in Southern California, I was faced with a decision that would set my life’s path; I had to choose to pursue my love of baseball by playing Little League, or my love for bowling. That’s right, bowling. I’m sure much to my parent’s relief, I chose baseball. For the next 10 years, I played Little League, Babe Ruth, and High School baseball. Looking back, it was the right decision, and one that would lead to a passion that to this day, still exists.

I immersed myself in all things baseball; playing year round for 10 straight years. During this period, as you can imagine, I played far more games than I can remember. But the one thing that I do remember, and will never forget, is the support my parents gave me. My father sacrificed the advancement of his career to be at every game I ever played; my mother, as she still reminds me, did as well. They never ever missed a game I played. Whether it was a road game against a faraway high school, or an All Star Tournament in another State, my parents were there. That kind of love and commitment to a child has had a very long lasting impression on me.

Today, as the proud grandfather of 3 boys who play baseball, football, and basketball, I show them the same commitment my parents modeled for me; it’s just what family’s do, right? While my record is not quite as good as my parents, having to miss the occasional game, my commitment is as deep and heart felt as were my parents. For me, there is nothing more exciting than to see your child on the field practicing his/her skills, and fiercely competing every game. I believe athletics can instill great values in a child, as they learn from the discipline of honing their skills through endless hours of practice, by learning how to deal with the failure of a tough loss, and the occasional coach who “encourages” a better performance from a child.

My passion for supporting children makes it no surprise that I ended up working the last 22 years for an employer that shares my same commitment; not only to her children, but other children that she has never even met. Each year, the owner of W.L. May Co has graciously supported my grandsons’ All Star baseball experience by making donations to the team. Her support of these kids has helped them to achieve much success, not only on the field of play, but in life as well. And she sure knows how to pick a true champion, as my 10 year old grandson’s team just won the Northern Oregon 10U State Championship. This fete is a repeat performance having won the same championship as 9 year olds. They are now off to Helena, MT next week to compete for the Regional Championships. Go West Linn Lions!!

My employer’s support of children is not limited to the world of sports. W.L. May Co is a proud participant in an organization known as Swipe4TheKids. Every time W.L. May Co processes a credit card transaction, the processing company donates a percentage of the fee to local charities and organizations that support education and sports for children. This is not something she “has to do”, it is something she does because “she wants to”; it enables her to make a difference in a child’s life through her commitment to their development and thus their futures.

To W.L. May Co, I say thank you; not only for the support you have shown to my kids, but for all the kids who benefit from your generosity. It is our children who represent the future. Your support of their futures, as well as all of ours, is appreciated..

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