For the past year, I have had the chance to dig into the soil with both hands again. This is something that after my vision loss in 2010, I never thought I would do again. Gardening for me has been such a wonderful instrument of therapy in my life over the past two decades. As the years went by, I seemed to love it more and more.
This past year I have been reintroduced to gardening once again, and I have also been introduced to an amazing individual who has enabled me to bury my hands into the rich soil of life once more. He has also reintroduced me to a huge part of my life that had wandered deep into the brambles. I have been mentored with compassion, knowledge, wisdom, common sense and friendship. I have been amazed by this man, for his energy is infectious. His heart and his will have shown me a side of humanity that is most times lost in the fabric of society’s hectic ways.
I can see that I’m getting a little too sentimental with this note, but being a fairly passionate man, well, I’m just saying.
I’m talking about David Perry. I know some of you know him better than I do, but in one short year I have come to know of his generosity, his kindness, his extreme humble persona, his intellect, drive, and with all his aspirations set in motion, I can not help but be inspired.
A few weeks ago, an event was held here in Central Maine, in our local city of Waterville honoring a very distinct group of folks. The event was sponsored by REM.
REM (Revitalize the Energy in ME, where ME stands for both “Maine” and “me”) is a grassroots nonprofit organization that supports a network of citizen volunteers working to improve the quality of life in Central Maine. In REM, work is cooperative, diversity is honored, self-reliance is promoted, and civic life is renewed.
The community was invited to the REM Partner Community Volunteer Awards Ceremony at the Waterville Opera House. The awards were a local expression of the organizations awareness of the importance and appreciation of those who give their free time and talent.
Fifty-seven REM Partner organizations gathered to celebrate exemplary volunteers from ten REM Partner organizations.
REM Award honorees for 2014 included David Perry, for his tireless volunteer work with the Alfond Youth Center. Mr. Perry has introduced a program of organic container gardening to the Center, enabling the youth in the area a hands on experience with the rewards of successful gardening. In time, this endeavor will provide the Center with an abundant supply of fresh produce which it can use for its own nutritional programs for the community.
Hats off to David Perry. It has been an honor to work side by side with you, and I look forward to a summer full of continued learning and a growing friendship.
Inspiration is a contributing key to my own personal motivation, and you, my friend, are a great source of it.
Deon P. Lyons
No matter where you go, there you are, so take advantage of it!