Share some early memories of your son, Michael

Mike was raised by his grandparents in Pennsylvania until he was school age, so unfortunately I don’t have infant or toddler memories to share.  But from the time I first met him, and still true today, the thing that springs to mind is that he is a happy guy.  As he grew up he developed into a very extroverted, out-going child, loving to ride bikes around the neighborhood with a pack of friends, attend ice cream socials at school, and strapping on skates for organized events at Skateworld of Kettering.  We lived a quarter-mile from Indian Riffle Park and he loved the swings, monkey bars, teeter-totters, and merry-go-rounds.

Mike is a very determined person.  When he decided that he wanted to lose weight back in grade school, he controlled his diet, including eating cans and cans of tuna fish, to shed pounds until he was rail thin.  Then he decided to begin lifting weights and went after that with a passion, putting on solid muscle and eventually benching over three hundred pounds in high school.  He’s worked very hard to build up two successful businesses, working two jobs when necessary and teaching himself the business world.  When he puts his mind to something, it will get done.

Mike dreams big.  As he was planning our first trip to Disney World in Florida, I was told he wanted to get to the park when it opened and stay until it closed.  For the price of admission, I was willing to try although the prospect of that many hours walking around and standing in lines didn’t thrill me.  Fortunately, by mid-afternoon, he and his sister were exhausted and begged to go back to the hotel room and lay by the pool.  This was probably an even more appealing idea because I had purchased each of them unlimited fountain drinks for the week, for less than $10 each if memory serves me correctly, a serious bargain, particularly given the number of trips they made in that hot Orlando summer.

Mike loves cars.  I taught him to drive when he was sixteen.  We had two cars, both with manual transmissions, so he had no choice but to learn a stick.  There were a few hair-raising incidents as he tried to master driving with the extra pedal, shifter, and clutch added to normally overwhelming tasks facing a new driver.  But it would serve him well as he bought his first sports car, a Chevy Camaro.  Over the years he would buy and sell many other cars and I think he favors the Corvette above the others.  As they say, boys love their toys.

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