During a recent discussion about what the lodge members wanted in their website, an idea emerged about a member profile. The idea was not unanimous in its approval and deserved further discussion. How would we manage such a profile? Is it proper to add such a profile? We presently have a member that is preparing to deploy to the middle east. I thought I might use him as a trial and discussion in this effort (it was also his suggestion on doing the profiles). See what you get when you speak up!
Gary F, Paschke
When I asked Gary to write up a brief profile he presented quickly. This personifies Gary's Masonic career thus far. He is eager to jump in with both feet.
Gary first describes himself as the father of two kids: 11-year-old son and 9-year-old daughter, in which he is very involved with their lives. Gary has resided in Crawfordsville for 8 years. When you meet Gary two things will be obvious and that is he is proud to be a freemason and he is affiliated with the military. Gary has 22 years in the military. Seven of those years in the Marine Corps, and fifteen years in the Army National Guard where serves in the rank of Sargent First Class as a Battalion Senior Fir Direction Control NCO and a Fire Control Master Gunner.
Gary is an electrician by trade and is presently working on his journeyman status.
Q. Gary when did you join the masonic organization?
A. I started my journey in Freemasonry in February of 2020, I became a Master Mason in February 2021.
Q. We hear many reasons why people join the Freemasons. why did you join?
A. I had a lot going on in my personal life and wanted that feeling of comradery that I have only ever found in the military.
Q. Did joining the Freemasons provide you with what you were looking for?
A. Yes, The Masons for me have given me a brotherhood and a feeling belonging to something bigger. Being active in the Masons has given me a purpose and something to focus on that helps me deal with my PTSD issues due to my military service.
Q. How does being a Freemason effect your family life? A. My family has been supportive with my decision to join. Sometimes I keep active in going to different meetings, as I volunteer for everything, but they have noticed a change for the better in me. I try and schedule my time that I put in around my schedule with my children. However, they enjoy going to the lodge, and the guys are good with them.
Q. Gary, you deploy in about a month, how has that affected you and the family? A. My kids are my world, and this will be tough on all of us. They are old enough now that they understand what is happening more. This has greatly affected them. I am spending more time with them, and we talk about it. We have discussed how we will communicate and have a plan. I feel at ease also that they have brother masons if needed. The brotherhood is very strong and while I know my kids will be safe with their mother and stepfather, I have a whole fraternity of brothers there if needed, especially for my son.