The last couple of weeks, my wife and I decided to spend more time exploring all the “good” there is in the Kansas City community. By “good,” I mean all the fun and rewarding things to do as well as all the people serving others in remarkable ways.
On Friday evening, June 15th, at least 400 people gathered at Livestrong Park (home of Major League Soccer’s Sporting KC soccer team) and honored Monsignor Tom Tank, the current pastor of Ascension Parish in Overland Park, Kansas. Monsignor Tank had the vision to challenge local clergy, bankers, and community leaders in Wyandotte County to help tackle the problem of inadequate and deteriorating housing that was quickly leading to unsafe neighborhoods. In 1996, an organization called Catholic Housing (now known as Community Housing of Wyandotte County, or CHWC) was formed, and a slow revitalization of historic neighborhoods began to occur. CHWC has helped hundreds of families realize the “American Dream” of home ownership, and prompted development in a community that had not seen new construction in 85 years. CHWC also facilitated low-interest loans and home-repair grants for existing home owners, helped first-time buyers educate themselves regarding the home buying process, and offered financial and budgeting classes. So what has been the economic impact on the Kansas City community? Since 2006, CHWC has directly invested more than $16.5… Continue reading →
My mother, Rose Mary, is a special woman. Recently I was sitting with a group of men and we were discussing what we were most thankful for in our lives. The discussion was about unexpressed gratitude for things that we had taken for granted and had neglected to give thanks for. My answer was my mother’s love for me and all of her children, grandchildren, and now great grandchildren. My mother will be 77-years-old this June and I guess I would compare her love for all of us like the sun shining down on us. Most days we just take the sun for granted but it continues to shine and provide light and warmth for all that we need. In fact, how often does one stop and reflect about the sun and all that it provides for us? Well, mothers are very much the same even when children are ungrateful. Our mothers gave us life, and sometimes we take that life granted. “Unexpressed gratitude is like winking in the dark. You know how you feel about them, but they don’t.”
Well, it finally happened. My oldest son, Lamar Hunt III, graduated from college with three bachelor’s degrees – one in philosophy, one in math, and one in linguistics. He did so well at “The University of Kansas” that family members were obliged to attend not one but TWO recognition ceremonies. The first was a ceremony for those in… Continue reading →
Lamar Hunt, Jr. recorded a short video essay on the effect of sincerity in leadership and interpersonal relations earlier today.
Saturday evening, we were blessed to celebrate my wife Rita’s 60th birthday with about 100 friends and family. What always strikes me about events like this is the variety of people we have come to know over the years. Friendship can blossom in any setting, and my lovely wife is a testimony to that. There are, of course, family friendships that have deep strong roots and then there are friendships from shared activities or business relationships. Examples include things that Rita has participated in over the years, including tennis, aerobic dancing (jazzercise), and Bible study (to name a few).
To relate to others is to live. As part of the celebration of Rita’s 60 years, I asked someone to help me assemble a scrapbook of some of Rita’s most cherished moments. When I say “help,” I really mean “rescue.” You see, while I had a grand idea, I had no aptitude for the execution of that idea. Enter a new friend, Anna Slocum (scrapbooker extraordinaire) who my son-in-law, James Arkell, found through the “Scrapbook Page” store located at 13205 Shawnee Mission Parkway in Shawnee, Kansas. Anna did all of the actual work and I supplied her with information, ideas, and themes to incorporate. She handled the rest. One hundred and six pages, 203 pictures, and 83 mementos later, we had a two-volume scrapbook that reflects the joy and beauty of Rita’s… Continue reading →
Today my wife, Rita, and I attended a luncheon honoring three women who have changed the heart of Kansas City. The luncheon was actually called "Women Who've Changed the Heart of the City," and it is an annual luncheon that serves as a benefit for City Union Mission, an organization that addresses homelessness in the Kansas City area. The three women honored were Jane Chu, who currently serves as the president and CEO of the new Kaufmann Center for the Performing Arts; Laura R. Hockaday, who in a 38-year career with The Kansas City Star expanded the role of the society page of the Star to include, well, all of society including those from diverse cultural backgrounds; and Dr. Sharon Lee, the founder and director of Southwest Boulevard Family Health Care Services of Greater Kansas City. These are three amazing and gifted women!
Homelessness is a word that is very disturbing to many people and all kinds of assumptions enter into one's head about homelessness and what causes it. City Union Mission raises all of its funding without any government assistance. They have a men's shelter, a camp for underprivileged boys and girls, and most recently have added programs and services to uplift homeless women and children. What daunting, yet fulfilling, work!
In listening to Dan Doty, the executive director of City Union Mission, speak about homelessness, I would like… Continue reading →