Thankful Thursday: Teacher's high expectations had lasting effect

April 25, 2013 

I am writing to thank the gym teacher I had in junior high school more than 30 years ago. The first day of class, he set the tone by making us run -- not jog -- a half-mile for time.

Many of us had never actually run that far in our lives and felt sick afterwards. Most classes thereafter started with either a half-mile or a mile run. Only then would we move on to basketball, football, soccer, etc.

Years later, when comparing experiences with guys who went to other schools, we realized our teacher had pushed us to exercise much harder than usual.

He taught us to motivate ourselves and maintain our workout intensity high enough to achieve a healthy fitness level.

Even though his class was hard, I find now that his class improved my life, and I am grateful he cared enough to set such high standards for us. I wish all students could have a gym teacher like him.

So wherever you are now, thank you, Mr. Perry from Carmichael Junior High. I suspect that even today, you still can do "30 Perry's perfect pushups," and thanks to you, I still can too.

MIKE POWELL, Kennewick

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