My friend Garry has done more for peace and the status of kids around the world in the last year than almost anyone I know. It is hard to keep up with what this dynamo is doing. He and his partner Pedja have taken two trips to Laos to build schools and clinics that serve entire villages in the last year as they have for several years previous.
There, they financed the schools, clinics, and medical and school supplies by selling books on Amazon from his basement. In addition, every year he secures funding for and sponsors two kids from the villages to go to college. Furthermore, he takes nearly 20 nursing students to Laos with him to aide in the administration of care for the villagers as well as swinging hammers. Also, he hires outside contractors to come in and dig wells so the villagers have access to clean drinking water.
In his “free time”, he started to gather his literature for his PhD, and hopes to tackle that in between his other commitments. He got another student fully funded for university in Thailand, and the student moved in and started classes this week.
Garry was born very near the arctic circle and was raised on whale blubber and lived in a tiny village. Yet, he is one of the most sensitive, intellectual, and inspiring people. He is a professor of nursing, and as such, he started teaching clinicals for critical care and lectures as well this week. In addition, he has to do all the prep work to prepare for the students.
As if that weren’t enough, he has already begun to plan his next trip to Laos in 6 months, and begun packing tons of supplies that were donated by the family of surgeon who passed away. He and his partner Pedja are still selling books, and received 20 boxes this week!!!!
On top of that, he fundraises for the San Jose Gay Men’s Chorus, and volunteers at a theater on Friday’s selling drinks during intermission. As you can imagine, someone his interesting gets people to stick around the bar, and dig deep into their pockets to support the local community theater.
And to top it all off, the other day he was canning and making 36 jars of jam! Which if I know him well, he will probably donate a good share of to people in need.
I’m tired just writing about all that he is doing and does, but not to tired to paint. Garry loves butterflies, and so I painted this one for him.
Garry makes me, and everyone around him ask, “Whom can I serve and how can I serve?” The answer when—is always now.