I am the 2nd oldest of eleven children in a well-to-do family. To keep things running smoothly life in our family was organized and based upon reason. There was little emotion exhibited even between our parents. I came to rely on reason and eliminated most emotional response from my life. In the summer, we lived in the country and my older brother and I would grow all the vegetables for the next year.
In the summer my brother and I also sailed competitively. In the winter we would run trap lines for extra income. I attended St Louis University for two years. I lettered in swimming before transferring to Marquette University where I was elected to the student council and president of the honorary fraternity. After graduation as a Civil Engineer I went to work for an Architectural design business and left eight years later to start my own structural engineering company. The firm, from which I have retired, now employs forty people.
Although I am a procrastinator on things without a time limit, my clients knew I always delivered as promised. I also found that being somewhat lazy caused me to use a gift of intuition to arrive at problem solutions to engineering problems before actually having to do the work to validate the solution. This ability helped the business grow. I did a significant amount of work for contractors who were looking for innovative ways to construct buildings. I eventually worked on engineering projects in 23 states and was a guest speaker in engineering subjects in such cities as Chicago and New York. Prominent projects in Chicago include the design of the exterior façade of the Mercantile Exchange Center and renovations to the plazas at the Sears Tower and Hancock tower. The last project in New York was as a peer expert reviewer for the new Central Park Police Station.
I was married in 1966 and we had five children – four boys and then a girl 10 years later. The youngest son died of cancer in 1986 which originally lead to a separation and divorce. The divorce upset me greatly. Life had always been good and I never had given much thought to what life was really about. For the first year and a half after my wife said she wanted a divorce I spent most of my time trying to understand life. I didn’t even have a TV, radio, or newspaper. My book was originally a collection of thoughts put together in a way that made sense to me. Unfortunately, it also took away my enjoyments such as golf and duplicate bridge. I had competed in an industrial sponsored duplicate bridge league from 1985 to 1988 in which my team placed first one year and second another year. I was just short of becoming a official bridge master when I quit. I didn’t miss golf that much as it took away some frustration. In the years after the initial separation I committed myself to volunteer work and daily spiritual exercise. Helping others less fortunate helps reduce any feeling sorry for oneself. I remarried in 1993. The major events that have taken place in my private life since then are the death my wife’s son, the death of my oldest son in 2010, and my wife’s Alzheimer’s .
I am person who thinks for himself, I do not always accept what archeology , science, or even religion say should be accepted as the way things are. There are too many inconsistencies. In spite of contradictory information or even evidence the accepted paradigm holds sway. An engineer is open to lawsuits if something goes wrong even with standard engineering practice, if information has been presented that there may be a problem with standard practice. I believe that public needs to be aware that what they told may not be correct. My book is written to open people’s minds so they begin to think for themselves.