July has two very important anniversaries for me this year. One anniversary July 29,  marks 53 years that I have been married, and the other on July 10 is for eight years behind this KSIS microphone. After 53 years of marriage, I think I am starting to get the hang of that one. As for the radio, you the listener are my ultimate judge, but if you have enjoyed hearing and reading my mid-Missouri Memories these eight years half as much as I have enjoyed writing and bringing them to you on the radio both here on KSIS and my prior years with KDRO, then I am a happy man.

A lot of things have changed over the years, especially since I was married in 1960. For one thing, back then I weighed about what one of my legs does now. How my wife decided to marry the skinny kid I was then I'll never know. If there is a good thing about gaining weight, I guess it is the fact that my ears don't stick out so much. An old Chief Petty Officer I had in the Navy said I looked like a taxi cab with both doors open, which didn’t matter as much then because the full flowing mane of hair I used to have covered them well.  But enough bragging, I'll just say I have gained a lot over the years, and not just weight.

For instance, in 1960, there were just two of us, a skinny kid and his wife. Now I have a family with wonderful children, grandchildren and even great grandchildren to make my life rich and full. Without a doubt, most the credit for what my life is now goes to my bride, and like most men, I don't tell her that nearly enough.

Unlike my marriage anniversary, my radio anniversary does not require flowers or gifts to mark it, because I receive something better than bouquets every time someone stops me in a store or on the street to tell me they either read or heard a Mid-Missouri memory they enjoyed.

As I start another year of radio and married life, I hope I have learned a few things that will make it a little easier and better than the last one. For one thing, I hope it is easier on those people who read and listen to my scribblings to understand what I am trying to say. I know sometimes it hasn't been easy for them. As for my wife, I can only say I will try harder to pick up after myself this year, try not to interrupt you when you are speaking as much, and I will be as grateful for this year to have you by my side as I have been for the last 53.

P.S.  Both of my July anniversaries are very important to me and I look forward to more of them. On that note, my wife has decided to keep me around for another year, and I hope as listeners you will also give me that honor.