Residence: Spencerport, N.Y.
Personal: I have been married for 39 years to my childhood sweetheart and best friend, Laurie. We both grew up in Buffalo, N.Y. region, meeting each other during the summer of seventh grade. I thought the loved her the very first time I saw her, and that love continue to grow deeper still today. God has blessed us with three children:
Katie, nearing her mid-30s, is licensed and works in the Brighton school system as an occupational therapist. She is also a missionary to many places in the world.
Holly, in her earlier 30s, is a wife and mom to our first grandchild, Vincent. She also works part-time with the American Red Cross.
Brian is the son God blessed us with. He would be 28 now, but he went home to Jesus in December 2004. He was a climber and a member of this ministry in its early days. We are assured by faith and God's promise that Brian now resides in a very high place!
Occupation: Since a very young age, I have been fascinated by machinery. My dear dad found a college where I could go to earn a degree in automotive technology. From there I worked in a variety of different shops and on equipment ranging from airplanes to motorcycles to outboard marine engines. God blessed me with a 33-year career at Eastman Kodak Company. Currently, my wife and I operate a part-time business servicing/rebuilding antique clocks.
How long have you climbed? I participate in the ministry as a non-climbing member.
How long have you been a Christian? It's been 26 years since two ladies from Hope Lutheran Church visited my home on an evangelistic call. It was the beginning of a life-changing journey for me and my whole family. I have been climbing towards Christ since that day.
Type of ministry you are blessed to serve in: I have been blessed beyond measure to serve in many ministries over the years. My wife and I were both in the drama troupe that Gary Fallesen launched and directed in our congregation at Hope. I have taught for many years in the fourth/fifth grade area of Sunday School and continue that today in our Vacation Bible School ministry. I am also active in our nursing home ministry, bringing worship service and God's Word into a variety of facilities within our local region.
Favorite Scripture verse(s): Romans 8:35, 37-39. This Scripture helps me to see that God's love for me (and you) is so over the top that nothing in all creation will ever effect it. Even in my ignorance, even in my sinfulness, He still loves me (and you)! All who believe and trust are more than conquerors! We who follow Christ Jesus will never be separated from Him!
Special “God moment” you'd like to share: Many years ago, within my early months of walking with the Lord, I found myself discovering more and more habits and regular activities in my life that I was no longer comfortable with. One such habit was using a wide variety of foul language. I would express myself out loud while at the work place, joining in with all the other guys. And at home, I usually would not verbalize my poor vocabulary, but all the same words were in my mind, my heart and under my breath. On this particular night, Laurie and I were returning home to Rochester, coming from Niagara Falls. It was a quiet summer evening, about 9:30 p.m. We had just begun the 1½-hour trip home when a huge “boom” noise let go under the car and, much to my surprise, most of the exhaust system fell out from under the frame. It was dragging and sparking and banging around something fierce down the highway. As I slowed the car, pulling off to the side of the road, I felt a challenge come into my heart. Everything inside me was saying, “Hold your tongue on this adventure and don't even let the foul words stream through your thoughts. just put the whole mess in God's hands. He'll get us home safe.” I accepted the challenge. I kept my mouth and mind clean.
We had to wait a bit on the side of the road because the pipe and muffler were very hot. I found some scraps of wire in the trunk. I fought with the remaining exhaust system to get it back underneath the car because it was hanging out the back still partly attached. I managed to wire up the pipe and started up the engine. Boy, was it loud! No exhaust system at all. Now it was 10:15 p.m. I knew getting this thing home would take a miracle. Well, that's just what God did. All the way back to Rochester. Something like 65 miles. The pipes hung in there, and we never saw a police patrol car.
Now, with all that being said, don't miss the end to this amazing story: The next morning I left my house to deliver the car to the repair shop to get it fixed. I made it to the street and drove 50 feet and the whole system fell to the ground. The night before, it held on for over 60 miles. The next morning, it hardly made the length of the driveway. This was one of the first times I saw God's power and grace up close and personal in my life. This was my miracle trip home from Niagara Falls. Thank you, Lord, for being my co-pilot every day.