As I sat to write a blog post about fathers day, I was looking for a fresh perspective. I have been blessed to be surrounded by great male role models for my whole life. My father, both Grandfathers, several Uncles, and other male friends of the family have guided and shaped me over the years. Their importance in my development is not lost on me. In appreciation of their efforts, I try very hard to pay forward all the influence I have received. Not only by guiding my own son but by taking time to mentor and guide other young men that cross my path on life's journey. Sometimes that takes the form of brief interactions, but sometimes folks cross our paths that become lifelong friends. This summer we will be losing one such young man as he heads off to college (to study agriculture). Jonathan was a lanky barely 15 year old when his father asked if I had a job opening. I told him that I don't normally hire teenagers. He told me that Jonathan was not an average teenager and that he had a passion for learning about agriculture. I took a chance on him, and here we are 3+ years later. Jonathan has grown in his knowledge of agriculture, and in stature (he started off 2 inches shorter than me, now is 2 inches taller). He is better off for having gained some experience on this farm, and we are definitely better off for having the opportunity to have such a quality fellow around for 3 years. Congrats on your High School Graduation Jonathan and all of us at Carlton Farms wish you the best at ABAC. We are proud of you and proud you are one of us.
As I get older, I increasingly notice that there's magic in helping others. If you have the opportunity today, or any day, help someone else. You'll both be better off for it.