Making a Difference

This past Tuesday I flew back home from a successful weekend LifeStory filming in the Cleveland, Ohio area. The filming was completed on Monday and my flight didn’t leave Tuesday until late afternoon, so I decided to contact and, if possible, visit the people who created an incredible place in Cleveland, the Ginn Academy. 

I learned about the Ginn Academy from watching my favorite TV show, CBS Sunday Morning. The piece on the Ginn Academy (http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/11/30/sunday/main4638577.shtml) is a must-see for everyone who has thought of making a difference in the world. Please view the video. It is well done.

The moment you step into the building you know you’ve entered a special place. Not only can you physically feel the positive energy in the room, but the greeting I received from the young man who greeted me (dressed in a red coat and tie) was one that I wouldn’t expect to experience at the wealthiest high school in any city. “Good afternoon, sir. May I assist you in finding someone today?”  

My visit with the school’s Principal, Byron Lyons, was worth the entire trip. He not only told me his story, but he also explained with great admiration the story of Ted Ginn, Sr. and his dream of making a difference in the lives of as many “at risk” young men in Cleveland as possible. After our 40 minute visit, Byron introduced me to “Coach” Ginn. I knew at that moment I was where I was meant to be that day. 

In the LifeStories I capture and preserve, I hear many people talk about how they hope to have made a difference in the world. Ted Ginn, Sr. and Byron Lyons showed how incredibly powerful it is to know that you are doing just that on a daily basis. My purpose of the visit when I walked in was to see if they would let me volunteer my services to teach the young men how to capture the stories of their loved ones. As Byron and I talked, I realized the impact of what I could give became more and more varied and exciting. 

Whether or not the logistics pan out for my teaching there is yet to be determined. But of this I am certain; we can each make a difference in the lives of others. All it takes is a dream and the willingness and desire to make that dream come true.

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