Patricia Feager is hosting a ActiveRain Contests this month titled "ActiceRain May Contest - Life is a Story". A popular entry seems to be telling our life story, or at least a part of it. It has been a long time since I blogged anything about my past, so this seemed like a good time to share some of my life story with you.
I was born in Portugal on a small Island in the Azores called Santa Maria. To the left is the house I was born in. Back then you were born in houses not hospitals, and a mid-wife performed the delivery.
My Family came to the US in 1960 when I was eight years old. We were able to come to the US, because the US Government made it possible for people who were born in Faial, the Island my father was born on to be able to immigrate to the US, because of a Volcano that destroyed much of that Island. So "By The Grace Of A Volcano" I was able to come to the greatest country in the world.
My father and mother sold everything they had, and boarded a plane to Boston, MA with 4 young kids. Except for a couple of suit cases, My parents had nothing else when they arrived in Boston. We lived in a small apartment in Fox Point, RI which was furnished with items my aunt, who had come to the US the year before, was able to gather through donations.
My father and mother had to work all the time for minimum wage to support us. This meant there was a period of time during the day, between the time my mother left for work and my dad arrive, that me, my brother, and two sisters were left by ourselves. This meant at the age of 8 years old, and the oldest of my sisters who was 7 years old, had to take care of the other 2 rug rats. My brothers and sister tell a lot of stories of what I use to them back then, but obviously none of the stories are true. A fifth child was born two years later, exactly 10 years after I was born. When the little runt was born everyone was excited, and no one remembered my birthday. To this day he is still a pain in my donkey. There is a lot I could write about my childhood, but I will leave that for another time.
On October of 1970 I joined the Navy. While in the Navy Between 1970-74, I did three West Pac Cruses to Vietnam, and was there for 5 Campaigns. I also got to go through the “Shell Back” initiation for crossing the Equator in 1973, that was an experience I will not forget. In 1973 I also became a US Citizen. The reason I became a citizen was so I could receive the rank of Third Class Petty Officer in my rating. The rating I had required a secret clearance, and secret clearances were only given to US citizens.
1974 is probably my most memorable year because of three major events in my live. First I was discharged from the Navy in September. Second I was married in October, and third, I was baptized into Christ in December. The second and third events changed my life forever, and have been the two most positive and important events in my life. Among the other special events in my life is the birth of my two sons, and my gorgeous granddaughter who is the love of my life.
I have been in Sales for 46 years. No I am not referring to the length of time I have had to convince my wife to stay married to me, I am talking about my employment. During that time I have had three different careers in sales. The first was working for John Hancock selling Life Insurance, Casualty Insurance, and Mutual Funds (I had all three licenses). The second was Industrial Sales selling Material Handling Equipment. The third is what I am doing now, a Mortgage Loan Originator.
I was a Councilman in Middletown, CT for six months filling the remaining term of the Deputy Mayor when he had to fill the remaining term of the Mayor. The people in Middletown were smart enough to not re-elect me to a full term the following election. I have also been the President of several Boards and Service Organizations in town. Up until 2018 I was one of two Head Elections Moderator in Middletown, CT, and oversaw, and reported the Election Returns for the 14 Voting Districts in town.
I love sports, and was a pretty good athlete at whatever sport I choose to play. It wasn't that I was talented, it was the drive within me to succeed at whatever I do. My dream growing up was to be a professional player in any sport, but to wear the Yankee pin stripes would have been the ultimate.
I collect sports cards, mainly baseball cards, but I have some highly sought after cards in other sports as well. My baseball card collection consists of several thousand cards, and includes rookie cards of Hall Of Famers such as: Nolan Ryan, Cal Ripken, Tony Gwynn, Wade Boggs, Steve Carlton, Rod Carew, Dave Palmer, Reggie Jackson, Tommy John, and Mike Schmidt, as well as many of the modern day stars. I also have Rookie Cards of Hall of Famers in other sports such as Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, and Wayne Gretzky. My prized card though is not a rookie card, it is 1968 Mickey Mantle card, and I also have a baseball signed by him mounted on a plaque with a picture of him and me shaking hands.
This is but a small part of my life story, but I think it will start to give those reading this blog an idea of who I am, and how I have arrived at the place in life I am at today.