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Cesar enjoyed volunteering

Cesar enjoyed volunteering
Cesar enjoyed volunteering
Josephine Goodrich enjoyed a visit at a Corydon nursing home on Dec. 22, 2000, from Santa (a.k.a. Paul Cesar), one of the last times Cesar played St. Nick. (File photo)

What a difference a year can make. Three days before Christmas 2000, I was taking pictures of Paul Cesar playing Santa Claus and delivering gifts to people at a Corydon nursing home. Many people probably didn’t know that this was something he had done for several years and it brought him much enjoyment. Paul, who then took the oath of Harrison County Coroner for his third term 10 days later, was his usual jovial self. He called many of the people he saw by name and asked about their relatives.
Fast forward to Christmas 2001. Paul and his family — wife Juanita, son Chad, daughter Leann and their families — celebrated Christmas a few days before Dec. 25. Five days after Christians celebrated the birth of Jesus Christ, Paul was dead. He was 53.
Paul was diagnosed with lung cancer just nine months earlier. And while we knew he was not doing well, I’m sure many of us were still shocked that his passing had come much too soon.
Paul was a good man. Anyone who knew him could attest to that. He may have tried to come across sometimes as a George Wilson in the Dennis the Menace comic strip, but those of us in The Corydon Democrat newsroom who dealt with him on an almost daily basis quickly saw through that facade.
The ministers who spoke at Paul’s funeral last Wednesday conveyed the type of servant leader he was and offered a brief glimpse into his personality. (See Beverly Herndon’s column below).
As I listened to Father Ken Gehring and the Revs. Neal Kentch and Richard Ryan speak about Paul, I wondered who will pick up the void his death created in those organizations.
Each year many organizations that rely on volunteers have vacancies that need filling, as persons who have helped in the past died or moved.
What about you? Do you volunteer to help an agency?
With so many groups around, I’m sure you can find one that matches your interests. (If you need help in finding one, call me; I’d be happy to make some recommendations.) And don’t worry about your limitations. The needs of these groups vary from answering the telephone and sealing envelopes to physical labor.
So why not make 2002 the year you give something back to a caring community. Do it for Paul Cesar; he’d be so pleased. Just think what a difference you could make in a year’s time.

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