PET/Mobility Worldwide founder was trained in thankfulness and civility

Mobility Worldwide MO-Columbia Update: built since 1-1-16 1,451

Thanksgiving has been a part of my life since as soon as I could talk. When I was just a little tad and someone would give me something or pay me a compliment, my Mother said, “Say thank you, Melvin.” And I did.

When I was older she reminded me with “that look”, if I did not. When I could write, some of the “thank yous” were changed to handwritten notes put into the mail with stamps we could ill afford. I was trained in civility. If someone gives you something, or pays you a compliment, express gratitude in the appropriate way. A part of that way was to never return an empty plate. If someone brings you a cake on a plate, do not send the plate back empty. Send it back with cookies on it. Sometimes it was a half-dozen eggs, for that was all we had. I was trained in civility.
As an adult I’ve written thousands upon thousands of thank-ful letters to donors to mission projects in which we shared. Now I write an average of fifteen to PET donors each week. I try to tell the donors how their gift improved the life of another sister or brother on this Earth. To not thank folks is to send the gift plate home empty.
I also really enjoy thanking the people who serve me. I compliment and thank a cashier who gives good service at a store or restaurant. When I see one of our cleaning people at our Lenoir Senior Center, I thank them for keeping the place so neat.
Here is a Thanksgiving story: A writer from Kansas went along to distribute PETs in Honduras. A grandfather brought his badly leg-handicapped grand-daughter to receive one. While they were waiting, he disappeared for a half hour and came back with a bag of fresh cucumber from his garden. When he saw the magnitude of the gift his grand-daughter was to receive, he could not “return an empty plate”. 
He, like I, had been trained in civility.
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“It appears to me that culture, which brings luxury and selfishness with it, has a tendency to weaken rather than promote gratitude.” – Samuel Johnson, 1779

Mel West, Director Emeritus
DBA Mobility Worldwide MO – Columbia

I have been on the receiving end of many of Mel’s thank yous over seventeen years, which also served as an example for my work with PET/Mobility Worldwide. I’ve also seen him give thanks to many others like a volunteer leaving the shop for the day.  Mel, thank you for starting this amazing and much needed mobility organization for which over 60,000 persons have had their lives changed dramatically.
Kathy Maynard, Business Administrator

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