Life of one we love is never lost. Its influence goes on through all the lives it ever touched.
Mentors play a big role in shaping our lives. I’ve been blessed to have many teachers, coaches, co-workers, family and friends who had an impact on my life. I would like to share with you some personal memories of one of my mentors.
Mr. (Les) Hultgren, “Coach,” affected the lives of many students and players in his life. Coach was industrious, honest, disciplined, responsible, passionate and caring. To me personally, he was a great friend, coach and teacher. Ten years ago, on August 27, 2001, Coach moved on to a better place. He left behind a legacy.
”We always have a platform. There is always someone whose life we can affect – even if we’re not aware at the time that we’re doing it.” – Tony Dungy, Football Coach and Author
Many coaches may not realize the impact they have on individuals’ lives. It is so powerful! Many players and students may not realize until years later the positive impact their mentors have on their lives. There are still things today, years later, that all of the sudden make sense. Things that I probably shrugged off at the time. Ideas and lessons that he probably thought were just not getting through. Great leaders, such as Coach, leave a mark; a legacy that lives forever and continuously adds to your life.
Every time I run a race or take a bike ride and get to the point where I think I can’t go any faster or longer, I think of Coach. Every time, I find that extra energy to keep going because I know he’s looking down on me telling me that I’ve got more in me. Moments that seem impossible are no longer impossible when you think of his lessons. He taught me that I could go farther and reach higher than I thought I could.
“We all have a role in leadership. We all can mentor.” – Tony Dungy, Football Coach and Author
Many of you have mentors in your life who have helped you. I challenge you to do three things.
- Thank your mentor for everything they have done for you.
- Be a mentor for someone else. Help them like your mentor helped you.
- Tell someone “You can do it, and I believe in you.”
“The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit.” – Nelson Henderson