Don't Let The Thanksgiving Spirit Pass! Tell Us What You Are Thankful For.
Posted November 18, 2008, 2:55 pm
Growing Bolder asks leaders, thinkers, writers, life coaches, entertainers and role models to weigh in on issues affecting our lives.
Read the responses from our esteemed panel of Thought Leaders, then add your own thoughts at the bottom of the page!
About Pat Paciello
Pat Paciello is fifty-eight years old, has three grown children, and has been happily married for the past thirty-four years. (The first year wasn't so hot.) He has been retired from the workforce for almost eight years. During that time span Pat has been particularly adept at enjoying leisure pursuits, and earning the highest recommendation from his peers for his "I do nothing, but I do it well attitude." His book, Has Anyone Seen My Reading Glasses? offers a unique and fresh approach to the subject of Baby Boomer retirement. First, it's written by a Baby Boomer who is actually retired. Second, the book is long on humor and personal anecdotes, and short on statistical analysis.
The following is my top 10 list of things that I am thankful for:
10. The mind blowing power of the internet, although, I utilize it mostly to read the same lame jokes sent by friends at work.
9. I play golf with three buddies who are actually worse than me.
8. I have learned to text on the phone. Due to my slow-moving fat fingers, it takes me five minutes to communicate a thought that took me five seconds by phone.
7. The slumping stock market which eliminated all my April 15th tax stress.
6. OPEC, for raising the price of gas, which got me into jogging and in better shape.
5. My grown kids, for not leaving the house, even though I changed the locks and served them with an eviction notice.
4. A 52 inch flat screen HD television which makes it easy to spend Football Sunday in my pajamas.
3. The Football Giants put a smile on my face after the Super Bowl, and the grin hasn't left.
2. The thief that stole my wife’s credit card and spent less than she did.
1. The Pilgrims who resisted the temptation to feast on spam and mac and cheese, thus preserving this great holiday.
I want to be the first to thank George Washington for signing The National Thanksgiving Proclamation in 1789. This proclamation made Thanksgiving Day a day of observance for all the things we are thankful for. Now George was what I would call a Thought Leader!!!!
About Ted Skup
He believes that with obesity levels at an all-time high, fitness needs be a national priority. He says despite the fact we have an arsenal of exercise options at our disposal, the ultimate choice is, the simple push-up. Skup takes on the 35-billion-dollar fitness industry and explains why it is failing us, with its bogus claims, magic bullets, and quick fixes. Although the fitness industry may not want to hear it, push-ups are free, no equipment, no gimmicks and totally portable. He is the author of Death, Taxes & Push-ups.
I'm thankful for so very many things (and people and opportunities), that it's hard to narrow it down.
I'm thankful for the color purple, for my angelic dogs, for my husband's abiding affection, for looking younger than my age, for living in a place that brings out more of my potential, for my newest addiction (the television show House, M.D. -- hey, maybe I shouldn't be too thankful for this one??), for my mom's good health, for a better chance for hope for this country, for being old enough to know better and still too young to care.
About Kerul Kassel
Kerul is an internationally recognized author, professional coach, speaker, and teleclass leader. She has written two books – Productive Procrastination: Making It Work For You, Not Against You, and Stop Procrastinating Now: 5 Radical Procrastination Strategies to Set You Free – Her programs such as Anticrastinate Your Way To Success, Power De-cluttering For Busy People, Dissolving Writer's Block, and Get Ahead Without Getting a Headache have been lauded world-wide.
Dr. Ronda Beaman
I am thank full that I am not famous; famous is a 24/7 relentless gig, I am happy to be obscure except to those who really matter to me.
I am thank full I am not rich in things that don't matter, give me my health, a close family and love over worrying about my hedge funds any day.
I am thank full that I am not insured for acts of God; what would my legs or arms or eyes be worth, anyway? They are priceless and I own them and they all work.
I am thank full I have wrinkles; it's a blessing to have lived long enough to see an older face looking back at me in the mirror. I am thankful construction workers don't whistle anymore, but my husband still calls me a babe.
I am thank full to do the grocery shopping, cook the turkey and clean up the dishes for 20 of my friends, who have no one at home to share the experience with.
And, lastly, I am thankful for the capacity to recognize what I am thank full for, rather than being a selfish bore who expects others to make me happy and thankful.
About Dr. Ronda Beaman
Ronda is an internationally recognized expert on leadership, resilience, health and wellness, education, and coaching. She has conducted research, written many academic articles and books, and won numerous awards. Her current book, You're Only Young Twice, offers a definitive guidebook for growing younger, personally and professionally. She is also a certified executive coach and personal trainer.
Dr. John Langdon
I am forever thankful for 40 years of marriage, 3 children, 6 grandchildren, 8 sailboats, being a doctor, having a space on Growing Bolder and countless patients I have been privileged to care for over the years. I am still in awe of mother nature, great music, beautiful art and still being alive, especially now that some of my classmates are long gone - and so much more!
About Dr. John Langdon
Cancer still affects millions of people worldwide, but Dr. John Langdon says there have been major advances in treatment. He knows, because he's seen results first-hand. As the disease continues without a cure, genetic testing has become an exciting development in treatment options. But Langdon, an expert in cancer risk assessment and a Growing Bolder guru, says that lifestyle changes may prevent some types of cancer.
1. Share with those with less. Consider the gift of one week's grocery bill donated to a community food bank, domestic violence or homeless shelter, foster parent or elder services association, or your United Way as a gesture of appreciation for what we have, and what others do for the less fortunate.
2. Express your gratitude in word and deed to those who care for others as a profession or as volunteers. Give compliment the good works of caregivers for our children and frail elders. Those caring individuals who clean the bottoms of babies and the bed-ridden, and help nurture and stimulate their minds, deserve the kindnesses of family members and neighbors all though the year, but especially at holiday time.
3. Give time to a worthy cause. Our volunteer investments in "Time Philanthropy" for the benefit of others builds community and creates a great example for our children. Spectatorism is relaxing, but our community's needs can be addressed, in part, by sharing our energy. Whether we choose to sing in a chorus, read to a toddler, mentor a youth, or visit a lonely elder, our time is a priceless gift which appreciates in value.
4. Conserve energy resources by consuming less fuel, reusing, and recycling. Native American culture considered our planet as a parent, worthy of respect and protection. Our throw away culture is feeding our landfills with trash, and our air and water absorb the residue of pollutants. Preserving our environment is self-preservation, as well as a life-saving gift to wildlife, plantlife, and our children's children.
5. Slow down. Whether behind the steering wheel or in conversation with others, speed is not a good thing. Being in a perpetual hurry endangers our lives on the road, and cuts short our relationships with others. Give yourself a few extra minutes in transit to be a safe driver.....and listen a bit longer to the words in conversation with loved ones and co-workers. Actively listen and show others that positive attention is a gift worth giving.
6. Put technology in its place. We live in a high-tech, low-touch culture, governed by the beeps, buzzes, and blinking lights of technology. As time is compressed, stress grows. Immediate response raises expectations, reduces careful consideration, and makes us more prone to error. Take a breather from all the numbing numbers, and ask others to be considerate in public and private spaces by turning the "on" switch "off." Our children need to know that our eye contact and voices are focused on their needs, too. The cell phone, pager, and e-mail should not keep our loved ones on hold.
7. Advocate with assertion, not aggression. Free speech is not an invitation to be offensive. Responsible advocacy requires thoughtful purpose, practical solutions, and open conversation. Clear and consistent communication with allies and adversaries alike sets the stage for progress. Advocacy is the heart-felt expression of a wrong to be righted, with composure and grace. An advocate's power is in persuasive and persistent articulation, and the recruitment of others to the cause.
8. Respect our elected officials for their service. While we say we believe in representative democracy, who among us is brave enough to run for public office? We don't have to agree with all of their actions, but we should respect their service, and hold them accountable for their actions....or lack of action. Silence is the antithesis of effectiveness in a democracy.
9. Health is a form of wealth. Making sure we eat right, exercise, and take time to rest and relax are the keys to clear thinking and long-term effectiveness. Our bodies cannot support us unless our minds resolve to take care and be careful. Being healthy examples to our children in nutrition and behavior sends positive signals for their attitude and future actions.
10. Take optimism pills every morning....the time-release kind. Negativity is contagious. Those who believe they will make a difference can achieve their goals. Pessimism is the mind's way of giving up before the first step is taken. Those who want to make change for the better in their lives, neighborhood, and the world around them, should stop whining and start winning. The power of one, multiplied and magnified, is the only proof positive formula for success.
Holidays remind us that bridges across the generations are built upon the stanchions of memory. Those among us who recall the glow of candlelight reflecting the faces at our grandparents' table understand how vital heritage is for finding ourselves. For those whose childhoods were less than ideal, we have the opportunity to assist others to have a more joyous future.
As we plan for the holiday season, we should recognize that there are neighbors, young and elder, whose weeks ahead are not brimming with joy. For whatever reason, in whatever circumstance, we well know that there are people in need who can be helped if we choose to do so. In honor and remembrance a family member or neighbor who was there for you when you needed them most, please thank those who illuminate our paths, exemplify kindness, teach justice, and nurture our futures.
What a fitting tribute to the legacy of our ancestors and what a positive example for our children and grandchildren. Your work, the gifts you share, and the example you set is an inspiration.
About Jack Levine
One of the most dedicated child advocates in Florida history, Jack was struck by the lack of attention focused on people of age. As a result, he founded 4Generations Institute, dedicated to bringing the generations together. He previously served as President of Voices for Florida's Children for 25 years. Jack's expertise is in developing and delivering messages to the media, public officials, and a diverse network of advocates on the value of preventive investments in children, parent leadership, grandparent activism, and dignified services for elders. He is also Partnership Director for GRAND Magazine.
That's a question everyone would want to bite into -- and should every day. Gratitude is one of those spiritual fundamentals. If you're not connected to it, something's amiss.
I give thanks every day for my good health, for the opportunity to share my knowledge of simple, sustainable living. I thank the Lord for the gift of my son, Henry, now 11 years old and just starting his life, seeing, growing, spotting new possibilities every day. I am thankful that he is enjoying the opportunity to learn piano now, and that I was able to buy a home so close to his school that he can walk to school (most mornings, I walk with him).
Most recently, I've lowered my carbon footprint by moving my office to my home, so the carbon expended to walk from my bedroom to office is minimal to say the least. I swim almost every day, and I always feel appreciative for members of the community who had the foresight to come together and finance the swimming pool about ten years ago.
It's a large Olympic-size pool in downtown Mount Airy, North Carolina. Most mornings, you can get your own lane and don't have to wait. And I express my gratitude to humanity by attempting to be "human" to everyone I encounter -- from the lifeguard to folks with whom I share pool equipment and lockers. It's a beautiful life.
Make a point of beaming its beauty to those you meet.
About Wanda Urbanska
Wanda is the host of the "Simple Living" show on PBS and she's also the author of six books on the subject. She co-wrote their first book by the same name in 1992 and she hasn't stopped downsizing since. Urbanska wasn't always a simple girl, though. She's a Harvard grad who wrote for big-time papers like the Washington Post and LA Times.
Yes, money is too tight to mention. There are cutbacks and credit crunches. There are bears mauling our financial securities, but there is so much more than this man-made panic that flushes us with anxiety at present.
There is, we hope, in our hearts and minds the sense of how much we all have, especially here in this country, in the here and now. For instance, we have so many underappreciated, unrealized, sometimes misconstrued, freedoms.
Freedom to worship: And yes, that means all religions, no matter how diverse from our own; Moslems, Christians, Jews, Buddhist, Taoists, Wiccans, Pantheists – everyone may worship. Every one of these belief systems is surely equally grateful to a Creator, a being, a spirit, a force, a universal mind, no matter how this is interpreted and understood. And yes, inherent in this freedom of religion, there is freedom from religion, if one chooses, as long as one honors the humanity of the guy next door, the community and respects the world we all live in.
Freedom to vote: No matter what our individual red or blue or entirely independent platforms are and in whom we trust to represent us, we are free to cast a vote without fear of physical, economic, and social reprisal. That's why it's always disappointing that so few of us elect to vote. We should rejoice at the fact that we can pick who represents us and vote in every election.
Freedom to choose: Ah, not what you are thinking at all. We are free each and every day to make a choice: A choice for yes instead of no. A choice for the positive, instead of the negative. A choice for the lightness of being. A choice for seeing the goodness in all others fundamentally. After all, we are all a crapshoot of the same DNA with similar desires for peace and health for us and our loved ones.
Freedom to make a difference: No, none of us will probably affect life on a grand scale, but then, who has in the course of human history? We do however have the ability to affect one other person, even ourselves each day. Volunteering is just one way in which to express this freedom.
Freedom to be at peace: To be first at peace with ourselves, then with our family, then our friends and our neighbors. Maybe focusing on that small peace will give us a larger chance at giving peace a chance, then to profess peace with messages of strife and discontent.
Freedom to be healthy: To honor one's marvelous machinations, the body, by heeding its message. Listen, you can hear it: It wants to be fit. Of course, not all can be healthy all the time, but we attempt to be free from pain and disease through making free will choices. We have it all at our disposal here in this country.
Freedom to learn: The world is truly our oyster and full of knowledge. Learning one new thing a day is a joy beyond imagining and open to everyone. One only has to look and listen.
Freedom to love: At last, the most important freedom, being free to love another with acceptance and an open heart, and allowing others to do they same, with the realization that all of us are worthy of receiving and giving love.
For all these freedoms at our disposal, we are truly thankful this Thanksgiving and every day.
About Cliff Eggink
Not that long ago, Cliff was a coach potato. But when he hit 60 years old something hit back. He decided to see if he could get into the best shape of his life. He entered an Ironman Triathlon and he found his passion. Now known as the Iron Geezer, Cliff and his wife Tatjana are both USA Triathlon Level 1 Certified Coaches. They are also avid hikers, walkers, swimmers, runners, bikers, cross-trainers and kayakers. They also have their own Web site.
I am thankful for the wonderful people in my life that have gotten me through so much both family and friends.
I am also truly thankful for having such a wonderful husband and three terrific children (triplets- 2 boys, Teddy and Scott and a girl, Nina) all of whom are my best friends. I feel truly blessed.
About Karen Einsidler
She was leading what looked like a storybook life when she was diagnosed with cancer. The mother of triplets was an attorney and active in the master athletes world when she underwent a double mastectomy. Rather than quitting, she dove back into competitive swimming and bounced back to return to the World Masters Championships, where she captured a gold and four silvers. To Karen, giving up was never an option.
I do a daily gratitude page in my journal. At least five show up consistently:
- My body/mind functioning harmoniously.
- Love expressed all around with my wife, family, friends.
- Florida warmth, green and blue.
- My music and work, and the infinite possibilities therein are more fun than 'fun'.
Thanks for asking!
About Howard Stone
With Americans living longer, healthier lives, the conventional idea of retirement is obsolete. Millions of Americans are working past the age of sixty-five - not because they have to, but because they want to. Many, like Howard and his wife Marika, discover second careers, start their own businesses, or go back to school. Howard enjoyed a long career in international advertising sales and magazine publishing before he became a certified life coach at age sixty-four. Marika is the editorial director of 2young2retire.com and has been a journalist, English teacher, public relations account executive, and small business owner. She is also a certified Kripalu yoga teacher.
My health, my job, my basketball teammates, family and friends!
About Deb Smith
All Deb Smith wanted to do was go to basketball camp, but when she looked for one, she discovered there wasn't one for women of a certain age. So, she did something about it and started the Not Too Late Basketball Camp. Within a couple of years, the camp has exploded in popularity and it now draws women over 50 from across the country to Maine each summer. Want to learn more? Check out the Not Too Late Basketball Camp Web site!
I am deeply, humbly grateful that I can--at 66.5 years of age, still tap dance!
A much older friend of mine (with whom I used to walk the Hills Of Beverly when I lived in Southern California) once said, "If you walk every day, there probably won't come a day when you can't walk." For me, a longtime hoofer, the parallel to that has been "If you take tap class every week, there won't come a day when you can't tap dance!" (We figure we'll just probably drop dead in the middle of shuffling-off-to-Buffalo--- which really isn't such a bad way to go...)
When my husband and I moved to our little maritime village across the Golden Gate Bridge, I discovered Stage Dor [sic] Dance Studio, run by Doree Clark--a couple of decades younger than I am, and still tapping. There she was, along with dance instructors like Lane Driscoll (see picture), teaching tap, Bob Fosse jazz, salsa, and even pole dancing to adults.
Doree also founded the "Don't Quit Your Day Job Dancers" which is one of the great cultural institutions in the San Francisco Bay Area that puts on close-to-Broadway-calibre productions every year.
In the program, the cast members also list their "day job" professions: doctor, plumber, office manager, vet, portrait painter--you name it, the "Don't Quit Your Day Job Dancers" have had at least one of every profession among their ranks over the years.
So what am I grateful for among many, many things (including a new, incoming administration)? It's Doree Clark--who currently teachers our weekly Wednesday tap class--a woman who has given our community such a wonderful place to express our Inner Dancer.
We Fifty-and-Sixty-Somethings have found that dancing keeps us young and healthy and happy to be alive.
About Ciji Ware
She is an expert and author specializing in baby boomer books. She has a lot to say about the downturn in the housing market. Her latest book "Rightsizing Your Life" has become a must-read for the boomer generation. Ciji is one of GB's favorite guests. Saying she's multitalented is an understatement. She was a reporter/commentator on radio and television in Los Angeles for over 20 years. She's the first female Harvard grad to serve as president of the Harvard Alumni Association. She's also written three novels. Old time radio fans will recognize her last name. Her father, Harlan Ware was one of the main writers of the long-time classic One Man's Family.
About Christopher Hopkins
The "Makeover Guy," knows how to revive the looks of boomer women. He believes women become more beautiful as they age. His new book, "Staging Your Comeback: A Complete Beauty Revival for Women over 45," is a guide to looking modern, not foolish, at an older age. It helps older women find solutions to their aging issues and talks about how although they are busy with life, there are simple, quick ways to keep your aura shining bright.
At this particular time, since I will be celebrating my 70th birthday in a few days, I am grateful that I feel as great as I do and that I have sufficient energy to do all that I wish to do - which includes mountain biking and hiking in Arizona (with some spa treatments in between) - with my daughter, Lisa, who will be helping me celebrate another decade of living.
About Joan Hansen
Joan Hansen is on the front lines of social change. She is the director of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program in Orange County, Fla. She helps people over the age of 55 become involved in the community through volunteer work. She is a mentor in the Amachi program that counsels children of parents in the prison system. After the untimely passing of her daughter, Joan is raising her grand daughter by showing her the world!
I am thankful to be alive at this time in history.
I hear many complain about today's medicine, but I broke my neck in 2007 in a 50 mph bicycle crash. Same injury 30 or more years ago and I would be dead or Paralyzed.
I serve in an Army at war that saves many more soldiers than was possible in previous wars.
My daughters are growing up in an uncertain economy, but they are college ball players learning the life on the playing field, not watching the boys play as they would have 30 or more years ago.
We live in the what are in many ways the bast of times and I am thankful for that.
About Neil Gussman
Gussman, a masters cyclist, suffered a horrific bicycle accident in a race. He broke his neck, shoulder, nose, collarbone and ribs. Remarkably, all he could focus on was returning to competition. It didn't take long. Just three months later, he was back on the bike, racing along the same course where his accident occurred. That earned him the Masters Athlete Comeback Athlete of the Year Award. Then again, perseverance has always been a part of Gussman's life. He is a chemical weapons expert and a man who believes in his country. That's why after 23 years, he's re-enlisted in the National Guard. He is a world-class athlete, world-class father and world-class human being.
I feel most thankful that I grew up in a time when kids could make slingshots out of real rubber from inner tubes, when most kids in the second grade carried a jack knife and used it for whittling or playing mumbltypeg.
We played marbles during recess and walking home from school was no big deal, even if it was a mile and a half.
No, TV, only radio or listening to my grandfather, father and uncles tell stories about their adventures and wartime events.
Saturdays sometimes meant riding in the back of the truck on our way to the small town about 20 miles away where mom and dad went shopping and us kids went to the matinee to see Roy Rogers, Gene Autry or the Cisco Kid chase the bad guys.
Picking out our school clothes from the Sears catalog then waiting day after day for the train to stop at our small town of 40 people to drop the packages off at the General Store/Post Office.
I'm thankful that I was surrounded by loving parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, a brother and sisters that are still a part of my life (except for the parents/grandparents).
It was a Huckleberry Finn kind of life and it was grand.
About Ed Shadle
At age 67, he is a speed demon who's attempting to steal something the British have had for 20 years -- the world land speed record. And he plans on doing it with a jet-powered car he created himself. Shadle, who worked with IBM for 30 years, created the car from an old fighter plane. The North American Eagle is an old Lockheed F-104 Starfighter that he modified to not lift off the ground. But Shadle doesn't want to be the driver of the car when the record attempt is made in Nevada, so he's looking for a driver by holding an essay contest. Shadle says the car will go up 800 mph, which is more than half of the speed of the old airplane that flew 1,400 mph.
I'm thankful for so many things in my life, but most of all, for my wonderful husband, my supportive and very creative grown children, and my little angels - 2 grandsons and one granddaughter.
They light up my life and cause me to give thanks each and every day. I am indeed blessed.
About Nancy Nordstrom
Nancy is proof that it's never too late. She didn't publish her first book, much less even write it until she turned 61. And what a book it is! Learning Later, Living Greater will help you transform your retirement years into a personal renaissance of education, personal growth and social engagement. Nancy is the diredtor of the Elderhostel Institute Network, the largest educational organization for older adults in America. She is an expert on lifelong learning, something she believes is critical for anyone over the age of 50 who is interested in living a more fulfilling life.
I'm sooo superstitious (inherited trait)---so unfortunately I rarely voice the good things in my life except to say thanks to those who have contributed to all that I'm thankful for--like to my husband, who is mentioned on my "Thanks!" page in "Forever Cool" and will be again when I hopefully (you see how I don't tempt fate?) will have my next book out on shelves this coming April 14, 2009.
But certainly as I listen to the news, which is so full of hard times and uncertainty, I think of all those that have even more personal difficulties to overcome in addition to what assails us all.
I believe anyone with their health (and their family's good health), a roof over their head, warmth during this winter, and ample good food on the table has much to be grateful for.
Having a job is also something to be grateful for--especially if it's fulfilling too.
My clients, and my work are a gift--and I never cease to value them.
About Sherrie Mathieson
She's made an indelible mark as an award winning Costume Designer and Fashion Stylist. You've seen her work in countless feature films, TV shows, music videos, commercials and print. She's styled Academy Award winning actors, sports figures, rock stars and many others. Now, she's offering to style you! Sherrie created a manual to help bring you and your clothes into the 21st century. Her book, "Forever Cool: How to Achieve Ageless, Youthful and Modern Personal Style" is tailor made to give baby boomers a tailored look! Don't wait too long to read it because she has a new book due out this spring!
Here are some of my thought about the things that I'm thankful for in my life.
- As a child I was thankful for being able to grow up without the fears that parents are concerned with today.
- Also as a child I was thankful for those summer vacations spent on my uncles farm learning what work was all about.
- Thanks to my parents for fortifying the importance of a good work ethic, and also giving me guidance by example to be a good and kind person.
- I'm thankful for the many wonderful teachers that I had, and are still vivid in my mind.
- I'm thankful for the many friends that I have made along life's journey. So many friends from my early years are still in my life.
- I am thankful for the opportunity to have succeeded in business throughout my life, and especially thankful that I am still actively engaged in working on things that I thoroughly enjoy.
- I'm thankful for the relatively good health that God has given me.
- I am thankful that I am able to pursue my lifelong love of motorcycling, especially at 73 years young.
- Most of all, I am thankful that I was blessed with such a wonderful and close family. While many of my family members are gone, I will cherish the memories of them and the good times we had together.
- I'm also thankful for the Growing Bolder crowd giving us examples of living life to the fullest.
Thanks to each and every one of you.
About Lou Whitney
Now in his 70s, Lou does things people much younger could not. Whitney is not only a pioneer in Veterans Motocross racing -- he's a competitor. Whitney is a part of the fastest growing division of the sport, and staged the Veterans Motocross Championships in February of 2008. He also does another type of riding -- adventure riding. He goes on an annual ride to places like Mexico, the West Coast and Canada.
In response to your question I have just enjoyed my 95th birthday, and I remain in relatively good health.
That alone should be sufficient reason to be thankful. For the most part, my life has been trouble-free.
Of course, there have been little bumps along the way. But I am thankful for all the joys that life has provided.
About Helen Kuhn
She may be a late bloomer, but 94-year-old Helen Kuhn is anything but a wallflower. After getting married for the first time at the age of 60, one year later she took another brave leap and got her pilot's license. When she turned 70 she became instrument rated -- the most difficult rating in aviation. This is a woman who's feet are firmly planted on the ground, but continues to reach for the skies!
What I am thankful for is having a wonderful wife and 3 great sons, and especially for being blessed enough to have beaten cancer 6 times and still able to compete in triathlons.
About Tony Handler
Tony isn't supposed to be here. Twenty-five years ago, he was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer and given two years to live. That same year, he completed his first triathlon. He's run in hundreds since! But that was not the end of his health issues. After that, the cancer attacked his liver, prostate and thyroid glands but he's beat them all back. His story will inspire you to keep on fighting, no matter what life throws your way. He is first recipient of the Growing Bolder Award. Click here to see Tony in action!
I'm sure it has changed over time, but at this point in life, I am so thankful for having a lifetime partner, wife and best friend in Carol.
About Joe and Carol Neal
Triathlons are difficult enough, but imagine competing against your spouse! Carol and Joe Neal have been married for 40 years and their relationship is as strong as their bodies. A former college athlete, Joe now relishes the opportunity get out and test himself in as many triathlons as he and his wife can enter! Click here to watch a fascinating Growing Bolder video story on Joe and Carol Neal
I'm also thankful for our health and success in raising two wonderful daughters, who continue to amaze us with their personal and professional accomplishments.
I also need to include our son in law Tim, two terrific grandchildren and last, but not least, Carol's parents, Nancy and Ray, who have always been there when we needed them and provided all the guidance, support and encouragement we could ever ask for!
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