As we get older we tend to think more about those that shaped our lives. From male models, oops, male role models, mentors, good friends that just brought us along for the ride, to those that stayed by us even through the bad stuff.
I was blessed to have many to look up to. In past posts I even identified those that I considered hero's in the family. So take the time to consider those that gave you faith like my Uncle Henry Whetsel, or showed you how to survive outside like my first scoutmaster Jack Fourie, or that guy that took you under his wing like the great avionics supervisor Parke Anderson, or even the life long friend that carried you all over the world like Vernie Rose. All along the way their was someone lending a hand and lifting you up. Hopefully you have had as many in your life.
There is always one that just stands out, not just in your eyes but, one that has a country in his debt. This guy was a leader, trainer, a guy that lifted you up to be a better person. I can not imagine how many mechanics on the United Airlines 747 line owe their training to Ben Reed. He had very high standards and passed that on to all of us. Benjamin Franklin Reed IV devoted his life to his country. He started in high school in ROTC and never stopped. All the way through the ranks in the Air Force up until he passed away working at the Travis Air Force Base Museum as a volunteer. Ben was my Father-in-law, my dad, my best man, and my friend, we will miss him. We put a few pictures together to honor his life.