I come from Strawberry Mansion. For those of who who aren’t aware, Strawberry Mansion is one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in America. I wish I could say that things have gotten better since I grew up there, but that’s far from the case. In fact, things have only gotten worse.
When I grew up there, beating someone up was a right of passage that you had to go through in order to ensure that you were protected. The street life was the only life that we knew. Most of us were good kids, but we were forced into tough situations due to our terrible socioeconomic situation.
I remember when it came time for my right of passage, I walked up to a stranger who was walking his dog and hit him in the legs with a baseball bat. I had to have broken at least one of the legs, because I really went hard on them.
I’ll never forget the look in his eyes. He was obviously in pain, but the look that he gave me was of confusion and pity.
That look is what motivated me to turn things around and focus on my journey forward.
I want to thank another person, who kind of nudged me to write this journey. That man is Joe, a man that I met when I was about to retire. Joe had been working at the local animal shelter and immediately became interested in my story. We’ve been in touch for well over a year now. He’s a great young man. Please support his business: Best Dog Crates and Beds.
Lastly, I want to thank my family. For without them, nothing in my life would be worth living. They give me purpose; a reason to go on. I am truly thankful for every minute that I get to spend with them. To my everythings, thank you. Thank you and God Bless!