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  #41 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2014, 09:32 AM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Jason: Your doing a great job in helping out Jerry, keep up the good work!

Larry
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Old 03-20-2014, 12:03 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Far too often in this thing we call "life," a man is judged by the size of his bankroll, the cut of his clothes, the cost of his fly-fishing gear, or the sticker price of his car/truck. And, if one was to use these criteria in measuring my "net worth, so to speak, I might be found wanting in some regards.

After all, I wear what I like-- I'm somewhat "fashion-challenged" unless it's made for fly fishing --I fish rods that aren't pricey but suit me fine, and I drive a 4-WD "Fish Truck" now pulling up on 16 years of age. Given all of that, however, I still consider myself "wealthy" in every stretch of the imagination for two very BIG reasons-- [U]I've got a great family and I've got friends!!

Now, I'll grant you that many of my friends are of the long-distance variety, with some of them residing between two or three fly-fishing sites that I frequent. A few are close or occasionally stop by whenever they're in the area or on this river we call our "home waters," but most of my friends are a heckuva lot more than a mile or two down the road. Yet, they're never more than a few key strokes away.

Proof of that last point came in the form of another box earlier this week-- a "care package" from some of the good folks here on the forum. Come this Saturday afternoon, a great deal of it will be put to good use in a class setting with kids who've already known far too many challenges in their young lives. And, my friends, for that and everything else you've helped me to do, my gratitude is eternal and straight from the heart.

Naming names is akin to asking for trouble on my end, as the old brain matter sometimes responds like it's more along the lines of swiss cheese in my "memory lapses after 16+ years of fighting brain tumors. But, I'd be remiss if I didn't give shout-outs to Jason, Larry, Eric, Mike, Joseph, Cody and a wealth of other good folks who've stood tall in my corner, just to cite a few. You've all enabled me my moments to rest and re-group, and restored strength to weary bones. A mere "Thank You" doesn't quite seem to be enough, but it will have to do for now...

May the Good Lord forever bless each and every single one of you with safe journeys astream, tight lines always, and family and friends with whom to share your adventures...

Jerry, aka hairwing530
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  #43 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2014, 12:12 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Jerry,
I know it may be too much but is there any chance we could put some faces with these names? I'd love to see an overview shot of one of your fly tying classes or even just a couple with you and your "kids."

Thanks for the hard work, brother!

Hokie.
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  #44 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2014, 03:03 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Jerry, as you know we have never met in person, but I'm extremely proud to be able to call you my friend! Keep up all that good work you do with your cancer kids. I hope the Lord shines a special light on you and your family!

Hokie has a great idea, how about posting a photo or two of your classes, that would be really nice to see some of your kids in action!

Larry
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Old 03-20-2014, 03:29 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

I don't believe that being friends has anything to do with distance. I've neighbors right down the road from me who I hold in a lot less regard than several of the people here. You are a friend and an example to a lot of us here Jerry and we want you to know that we are behind you. You do a lot a good for those children. If I were closer, I would offer to help more, but as it is, distance is against me. I am going to keep this thread going for as long as I can though- at the very least until I'm labeled the "forum pest".

BTW- Michigan isn't THAT far according to two little boys who end their prayers every night with, "And please God help Mr. Jerry, Emily, and all the other kids and let them know that we are thinking about them."

If they get their way, they are going to be knocking on your door this summer.
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  #46 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2014, 06:08 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Quote:
Originally Posted by labradorguy View Post
according to two little boys who end their prayers every night with, "And please God help Mr. Jerry, Emily, and all the other kids and let them know that we are thinking about them."
Boy, This choked me up a little!

Jerry, you are a great inspiration to what being a decent human being really means. I feel quite a lot richer just to have gotten to know you over these here web waves.

Be well my friend

Jay
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Old 03-20-2014, 07:05 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Guys,

I am about to tell you a short story that few outside my "inner circle" know in all of its detail, a recounting of a mistake made that may or may not lessen what you think of me in some small way. And, if it does, therein will rest my lot in life. But, I have to be honest, even if it risks the perception of yours truly among my friends...

It was early in late May of 2009, about a month removed from the year's classes and in the last year of my blindness caused by brain tumor #2. I was asked by a writer for permission to use a few photos featuring "my kids" and me, and without pausing to think about it, I gave the project my blessing, assuming the position of "What harm could it do?" What I lacked in eyesight soon was dwarfed by an even larger absence of insight on my end in making assumptions that weren't mine to make.

In allowing the publishing of a few photos, I unintentionally caused some unneeded pain to a very good family, hurt one of "my kids" as well, and left myself with hours of self-doubt and an ache in my gut that wouldn't soon go away.

The family in question had lost their child a month before the photos came out, and it only amplified their deep loss ten-fold. The young member of "my kids" finally was on his way to recovery when he saw the photos and began re-living two years that he desperately was trying to put behind him. And, despite my personal awareness of the insidious side of cancer, I let it happen on my watch, a point of fact of which I'm not proud.

Sure, I could take the easy road out and blame it on my being blind, or trying to do something good for all of "my kids." But, that would be a cop-out of the worst kind, and a feeble attempt at trying to excuse my own short-coming. It was a mistake of huge proportions, and one that took me a long while in which to come to terms with my error in judgment.

I believe that the classes with "my kids" have been what they are because of two reasons-- their trust in my heartfelt respect for the privacy of "my kids" and their families, and my deep understanding of what we all as cancer-fighting survivors endure on a daily basis. I made the mistake of forgetting about the sacred bond of trust once and ONLY once, and I won't be guilty of doing that ever again. The entire dynamic of our time together-- "my kids" and me --and the hours spent with their families and the like already is complicated by the unknown factors that accompany a disease like cancer.

So, now you know, and only you can decide if I'm still worthy of your friendships. I pray that my blunder some years ago doesn't change things as they are, but you'll have to forgive me if I defend the sanctity of "my kids" and their hours here in our home until my last breath is taken...

The lesson learned in 2009 still lingers...

Jerry, aka hairwing530
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  #48 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2014, 08:06 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Jerry,

As a newb here and with only a few notes between us, I can say my life has been blessed in the short time we have conversed. I am humbled by your kind words of your kids and what they mean to you. If only I can continue to learn from you and what you do. I pray you are blessed with more time than you can imagine and the good Lord keeps healing you. You are truly an inspiration and a role model.

Shannon

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  #49 (permalink)  
Old 03-20-2014, 08:59 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

God guide and bless you for your selfless sacrifice and love for these children. Nothing on the face of the earth hurts as much as losing a young one. I shall pray for your kids,,and you fella's that are helping,,,each day.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:34 PM
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Default Re: Help Me Support a Fellow Member

Quote:
Originally Posted by hairwing530 View Post
you'll have to forgive me if I defend the sanctity of "my kids" and their hours here in our home
There is nothing that requires forgiveness. The boys had asked me about a photo of Emily so they could put a face to a name and I had already explained to them something very similar. I don't blame you at all. I don't put their photos on the web either. I sent a couple to you as a friend knowing they would go no further. I just figured you should know who was chasing their lab all around the yard to collect "tying material" for you.

Given the nature of the internet and as I have already explained to a few on here, I'm hesitant to even post an address where Lord knows who can pull it up on Google, let alone pictures of kids, but if anyone wants to make a contribution to Jerry's wonderful cause, PM me and we will make it happen.
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