My Grandfathers Name Was On It!
a young boy I had a sense early on that my grandfather, who I never knew because he passed away before I was born, was a great
person. My mother (who idolized her dad) never missed an opportunity to tell me how much I was like him and how he would have
loved me, whenever I did something kind, generous or skillfully.
So many stories were told by her of how he would help others and represent pride and honor in every aspect of his
life, I began to wonder if this was just the love of a child for her father or an actual great human being.
One day many years later I was helping my mother clean out her nightstand
in preparation for a move and there amongst her prized possessions, was a beautiful wooden plaque with my grandfather’s
last name on it. I asked mom what it was for and she told me that he insisted on hanging his last name from the sign over
his business. She went on to tell me of his feeling, that when you put your name on something it is the most valuable thing
you have and you must act accordingly.
back of this sign of honor there was an old yellowish newspaper clipping laminated there. Mom said that her dad carried this
clipping in his wallet for most of his adult life and laminated it to his very important nameplate when he retired, as if
they should always be together.
The clipping told of an old world craftsman that made good by bringing his skills to America. In the
spirit of how things were done those days and of what was important to my grandfather, this craftsman turned his blessings
into opportunity for others by sharing his knowledge with apprentices.
One day after many years of loyal service the two apprentices were granted an opportunity to show what
they could do. Each was given a budget and a full supervisory position in building a home for the craftsman’s company.
The first applied every aspect of what he was taught over the years
and meticulously constructed a fine home that anyone would be proud to put his name on.
The second seeing this opportunity as a contest decided to apply some of his own concepts. He felt
that by using lesser grade materials and cutting corners in places that wouldn’t be recognized by the untrained eye,
he would bring his project in under budget and impress his boss with a new way of making money.
One could only imagine their surprise when the craftsman awarded
each of the apprentices the house they built as a gift for their many years of service.
In my grandfathers spirit I make sure that whatever I do is worthy of hanging my name on.