Lion - November 2014
LAWYERS FORM A NEW CLUB Lions and lawyers are uniting in Tennessee: the Murfreesboro Downtown Barristers Lions Club held its charter night last winter. The club for law professionals has attracted 73 members. Members are considering doing pro-bono work for those who can’t afford a lawyer and mentoring younger attorneys as well as engaging in more traditional Lions’ service. The sponsoring club was the Murfreesboro Noon Lions Club, whose 2013-14 president was Barbara LaFevers, a judicial law clerk for Second International Vice President Robert E. Corlew, a Murfreesboro Noon Lion. “It occurred to me that it would be a great idea to have lawyers that could work on community service and develop a network,” says Corlew, a chancellor. “The idea was to build collegiality among attorneys.” Steve Daniel, a retired judge, was the charter president of the club. STAFFER RETIRES AFTER 52 YEARS Fran Carine, a staff member of Lions Clubs International whose 52-year tenure spanned more than half the history of Lions Clubs, retired in September. Carine, 72, started her Lions’ career in 1962 as a keypunch operator at international headquarters in downtown Chicago. Later that decade she helped convert membership records from plastic plates to a computer system, and for decades she managed the data control department. Co-workers in Oak Brook, where headquarters is now located, threw her a festive party on her last day. “I loved the conventions [she worked 28]. I loved the people I met. I loved the ambience,” says Carine, a Lion and Melvin Jones Fellow. “Lions around the world do wonderful things. The motto is We Serve. That works for the staff, too.” She plans to teach her nieces to cook–and take care of some overdue house maintenance. “I need windows, and the house needs painting,” she says cheerily. LIONS TAKE ICY CHALLENGE Lions have plunged headfirst into the ALS ice bucket challenge. International President Joe Preston had a bucket of ice water poured over his head while in Fortaleza, Brazil. He challenged Kiwanis and Rotary to do the same, and not long after, the president of Kiwanis also took the challenge to raise awareness of Lou Gehrig’s disease–amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. In Maryland, Waldorf Lions co-sponsored an ice bucket fundraiser for a 43-year-old mother with ALS. More than $42,000 was raised. The Chicago Windy City Lions Club did the challenge outside Lions Clubs International headquarters in Oak Brook, and its video of the event reached nearly 16,000 people. In Connecticut, Beacon Falls Lions have challenged the town to raise a dollar per resident ($6,000) in memory of a resident who died from the disease. Digital LION Watch a short video of President Preston taking the ice bucket challenge at lionmagazine.org. VIDEO MAGAZINE SHOWCASES LIONS The current edition of LQ, the Lions Quarterly Video Magazine, includes segments on Lions in Louisiana rebuilding a high school damaged by Hurricane Katrina, a Lions seizure response dog in Canada that helped save a woman’s life and Lions in Peru transforming the life of a young boy. Send your story suggestions to LQ@lionsclubs.org. Be sure to “like” and share LQ on social media. LQ is available on the LCI website, YouTube, iTunes and DVD. ONE OF US RON DERRY Sitting on his back porch a few months after going blind from retinopathy in 1995, Ron Derry was struggling with his blindness. He asked himself if he was going to go on with life, or be defeated. His answer is apparent in his character education program called the GOOD program (Going On Or Defeated) that he has brought to schools in Ohio for 19 years. Derry, a former middle school science and math teacher and sports coach, started out aiming to speak to a couple of schools a year about perseverance. Now, the Pataskala Lion visits 100 schools a year and with the help of Ohio’s Lions, has distributed 49,000 GOOD T-shirts that serve as rewards and motivators for students who need them most. How did you come up with the GOOD program? I had always been a very active, happy person and losing my sight threw me for a loop. My attitude had been terrible. I realized that as a teacher my strength had always been as a motivator more than anything. I thought that there might be a lot of things I couldn’t do anymore, but I could still talk to kids and help those who are struggling. What messages do you try to convey to students? My lessons are about perseverance, trustworthiness, bullying and working together. I share stories about my life, like how I designed my whole house while blind. I tell kids that everyone can make their lives as good as they can based on our attitudes. We can be the best we can be with the circumstances we have. Are there times you know you have changed a child’s life? After my anti-bullying lesson, a teacher later shared with me that there was a boy in the class who had been relentlessly bullying a girl with a deformed ear. After my presentation, he sobbed and told the teacher that he would never bully the girl again. He asked to apologize to the girl. They cried and hugged, and later became great friends. Stories like that reinforce that you’re making a difference. That’s what keeps me going. I may not see the children’s faces anymore, but I can hear the enthusiasm in their voices, and the feedback I receive makes me feel like I’m having an impact. You’re also making an impact as a golfer. Congratulations on winning the 2014 Guiding Eyes for the Blind Golf Championship. I had competed for many years but had never really come close to winning. I’m not the best blind golfer in the U.S., but that day I was! I love telling children about it, because they may want to be quarterback or get that great job in the future, but a lot of other people will want the same thing. What can you do? You can outwork the others. My hard work paid off, and that’s a lesson for the kids. Do you know a Lion who you think has a great story or deserves a bit of recognition? Email us a brief description of the Lion and the reason you’re making the nomination to email@example.com. Please include “One of Us” in the subject line. Find out more about the GOOD program at goodprogram.org. OVERHEARD “Never question someone when they are giving a donation like that.” –Lion Daniel Guzzi, mayor of Rockwood, Michigan, when a business owner donated $1,000 to the club’s candy cane sale after bad weather forced Lions off the road. From the News Herald. “If you’re from Tilden, you know how to play sheepshead when you were three years old.” –Julie Brenner on the card game sponsored annually by Tilden Lions at an Oktoberfest in Wisconsin. From The Chippewa Herald. “The man’s wife asked if we had found the snake they had seen in the front bedroom. Thank goodness we were finished because I don’t like to deal with snakes.” –Ken Hall of the Monterey Lions Club Disaster Response Team, which helped rip up carpets and empty rooms of furniture after homes near Nashville, Tennessee, flooded. From the Herald-Citizen. “It’s my mom’s dress.” –A shivering Connor Hoffman, 22, who wore a gown with a plunging neckline while taking part in the Olcott Lions Club’s Polar Bear Swim for Sight in New York. From the Buffalo News. BY THE NUMBERS 40 Roses replaced and replanted at the 14,000-square-foot Lions Club Rose Garden, tended by Charles City Lions in Iowa. 108 Canadian flags sent to a Canadian military cemetery in Italy by Central Saanich Lions in British Columbia. The cemetery is near Ortona, where 1,300 Canadian soldiers were killed in a battle with German soldiers. 63,716 Eyeglasses collected in the last decade or so by James Jacks of the Chambersburg Evening Lions in Pennsylvania. 697 Dictionaries given to third-grade students and teachers in 33 classrooms by St. Charles Lions in Missouri. 1954 The year Rupert Pineo started playing bridge and other card games nearly every year in the annual card marathon held by Shubenacadie Lions in Nova Scotia, Canada. He’s had 11 partners since he began. 2,190 Michiganders who joined the Michigan Organ Donor Registry thanks to the efforts of Lions and Lionesses during the 2014 Donate Life Day. 28 YEARS AGO IN THE LION NOVEMBER 1986 U.S. President Ronald Reagan greets International President Sten A. Akestam of Sweden at the White House. The presidents discussed the fight against drug abuse. CLUB of the MONTH EAGLE RIVER SLEEPING LADY MOUNTAIN LIONS CLUB COMMUNITY SERVED: Chugiak-Eagle River and Anchorage, Alaska YEAR FOUNDED: 1992 MEET AND GREET: Social time rules at the first of two Monday meetings each month. The 41 Lions meet at the Eagle River Clubhouse in a 40-acre park for dinner (provided on a rotating basis by members) and discussion. Potential members are often in attendance and hear from each Lion why they love Lionism. JUST ASK, IN ACTION: In addition to continuously inviting friends and colleagues to join, the Lions hold a fall membership drive during which each member is asked to bring one to three prospective members to a meeting. The Lions recently welcomed four new members who are shaking things up— they are the first men to join the previously all-women professionals club. A FLURRY OF COMPETITION: The Lions make winter more fun—and lucrative—by holding a raffle to guess the date of the season’s first snow. The winner receives half of the proceeds, and the other half goes toward club business. When the Lions see it snowing in the nearby mountains and know it will soon reach their city, the excitement builds. MAKING HOLIDAYS HAPPY: About 100 families in need have a merry Christmas each year thanks to the Lions’ Tree of Giving program. They gather, wrap and distribute donated presents and provide holiday meals. The Lions receive the best gift after putting much work and time into this project: the look on parents’ faces when they realize their families will have Christmas after all. NONSTOP FUNDRAISING: The Lions fundraise year-round, from the February Sweetheart Dinner to a popular face painting booth at the 3rd of July festival. They cater weddings and organize a pie-throwing game (with a good sport district governor as the target). These efforts and more help the Lions fund their vision screening program, high school scholarships, a massive Easter egg hunt, senior center Bingo and many other projects. WHY SERVE? “The heart of a Lion is not defined by who we are, rather, our desire to help people within our community and provide a place where all are welcome to join this effort.” – Lion Karen Burns
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