What will be written about this generation?
I have been pondering lately about our generation. Many events have taken place over the past 2-3 years that has changed the landscape of this country as we have known it. I started my real estate career in 1980 and now over 28 plus years later I look back on my life and think about those that influenced me the most. These are people that left a big impression on me and changed my life in a positive way. Several touched my life but when I think about the current economy and the current state of economic affairs one man's name comes to mind, Myron Stahl. Myron came to me as a referral in the mid 1980's and was a hard working self made millionaire. You see Myron lived through the great depression and told me stories of not knowing if they (he and his family) would have food on the table the following day. Food, gas and other commodities were very scarce and times were very hard.
Myron talked about the number of relatives and friends with several chidren that lived on meager amounts of food and general necessities just to survive. Myron, who is now deceased told me great stories about hard physical work and personal sacrifices made by him and his siblings and parents. All of the hard work and discipline paid big dividends for Myron. He invested his hard earned money wisely and became a very, very wealthy and respected man. I sold Myron some bare land west of Caldwell between Dorman Ave. and Farmway Rd. that is known as the Stahlridge Subdivision, one of the nicest developments in Caldwell. I also sold Myron a gravel pit that is located north of Beacon Light Road off of Highway 55 in Boise. Myron purchased this gravel pit when it was in bankruptcy and it has been a thriving gravel pit that has generated hundreds of thousands of dollars for Myron's estate and will continue to do so for years to come.
Even though Myron was a millionaire he was not a worldly or materialistic man. When you met Myron and spoke to him for just a little while you could feel and hear the peace, tranquility and wisdom of this great man. Myron once told me he would not have been half the man he was if he had not lived through the great depression. He said he worked as hard as he did so his family would have it better than he did and he certainly accomplished that and more.
Tom Brokaw calls my fathers generation "The Greatest Generation". My father, like Myron had very little growing up and had purchased and paid for 40 acres of farmland in Wyoming by the time he was 15 years of age. He came to Idaho at the age of 16 and a 7th grade education and was told he would never accomplish his lifelong dream of becoming a farmer. Dad not only became a very successful farmer but learned to use a welder and cutting torch as good as anyone I have ever seen. He went on to overhaul his own tractors and trucks and built his own potato and beet/grain beds for his trucks. He built truck beds and a gooseneck trailer that people marveled at.
I'm sure that during Myron's days as a youth that many thought things could not get any worse. When you don't honestly know if you are going to eat the following day it is hard to keep your faith. My Dad came to Idaho with very little money but a BIG HEART and a strong desire and passion to succeed with the limited 7th grade education he had. If Dad had not had a lot of the adversities in his life, I doubt if he would have accomplished everything he did. I credit all of my hard work, determination and ambition to my dad and the many days of hard physical work my sisters and I did on the family farm led to our hard work ethic.
I hear many people complaining about the high cost of gasoline and the high price of groceries and other commodities. There is no doubt that our society became accustomed to the inexpensive gasoline and groceries for many, many years. To have to suddently deal with skyrocketing prices for many goods and services almost overnight it is easy to understand the frustration.
I believe we will rise above these trying times as a country just as we have risen above every other challenge we have faced. We can complain about how bad things are or we can do like Myron and my Father did and simply work hard with a determination and faith that something good will come to those who persevere. We can become part of a generation that rises above the current trials and tribulations and we can do it while facing record high gasoline and commodity prices. After all, this is nothing close to the great depression.
I want great things said about this generation