The Christmas Story

It is my Christmas ritual to share this piece every year.  Maybe you can read it to a child… maybe you will just read it to yourself.  I hope you read it, enjoy it and find value in it … Most people — certainly those younger than 60 — may only know “Ben-Hur” as a […]

Thanksgiving

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day, a day which was first declared a federal holiday in 1863 in the midst of the War Between the States by President Abraham Lincoln.  It pains me to think that 150 years later, it is more often referred to as the day before black Friday. The year has been a challenging […]

When You’re Feeling Like George Bailey

“I had the blues ’cause I had no shoes until I met a man on the street who had no feet.”  When my kids were growing up, that is how I would teach them to respond to even their legitimate woes:  someone is always in a more dire strait.  Sometimes, however, a person gets the […]

My Three Sons

In 1979, my wife gave birth to our second child, a girl.  I was shocked that a female could issue from my loins.  Such was the limited vision of the world that I had those many years ago.  I wanted to name her ‘Jean Marie,’ Jean for me and Marie for her mother, but friends […]

David Walsh McGrath, Smiling Hero for All Time

Just last week at Friday Mass, we read all about friends from the Book of Sirach [6:5 – 18].  “A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter; he who finds one finds a treasure.  A faithful friend is beyond price…..”  I have been blessed with many people I call ‘friend.’  The two funniest men I know […]

Uncivilized

Galena, Alaska sits on the north bank of the Yukon River on the 64th N parallel, just two parallels shy of the Arctic Circle.  Flying out of Galena’s now inactive Air Station in the summer of 1973 in my T-33, I once saw the sun set and rise within a 15-minute stretch.  As I climbed […]

Martin Sheen: A Hero who Broke Through

Yesterday morning as I waited in the foyer of an assisted living facility, I glanced at a basket filled with old magazines.  The magazine on top of the pile was the AARP magazine.  I am not an “AARP guy,” but the cover picture was a picture of a smiling Ramón Antonio Gerardo Estévez, better known […]