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Rotary International President Gary C.K. Huang visited Rome, Italy and presented the Minister of Health, Beatrice Lorenzin, with a Rotary pin after she accepted his invitation to join Rotary.

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RI President felicitates Bob Stuart - December 12th “Bob Stuart Day

Age, as the saying goes, is just a number. A Cape Coral man knows that better than most.

Behind the sound of the tinkling bell, you might be surprised to see Bob Stuart camped at the kettle.

“In 93 years of my life, this is one of the things I have most enjoyed doing.”

Sharply dressed in a red plaid jacket, and enjoying every second, Stuart ring the bell for the Salvation Army.

You’ll see even after all this time, his spirit for giving is as strong as ever.

Stuart was born days before the U.S. signed a peace treaty with Germany in the aftermath of World War I. It was August 3rd, 1921.

“I was president of the world’s first Rotary Club.”

In a letter to Stuart, Gary C.K. Huang, president of Rotary International, commended Stuart for his service.

“Year after year, you have made time to help others,” Huang said. “Dedication like yours is what has made Rotary such a powerful force for good in the world.”

Over the years, Stuart has helped dozens of charitable organizations.

Stuart says he knows he’s doing the most good. “This kettle is accumulating money for people who desperately need it.”

We asked him for a favorite memory, or a special gift someone dropped in the kettle in the past. He says he doesn’t have just one, perhaps it’s because no one can say ‘no’ to his smile.

“Every time I’ve done this, everybody that sees me, participates. To me, that makes every one of those days extremely important, and no one of them greater than any other.”

Rotary International honored Stuart for his service last week, proclaiming December 12th “Bob Stuart Day.”

As a close family friend of Stuart’s, the day had special significance for Collene Howe, president of the Rotary Club of Cape Coral North.

“Bob, you have made such a difference in my life. Thank you for your leadership and your friendship,” Howe said, fighting back tears. “I will cherish all the times you sat around our family’s table and shared family meals with us. Thank you for everything you’ve done.”

This year, Stuart moved into Gulf Coast Village, a local assisted living center. True to his passion, he decided to set up with his bell and kettle right outside.

- winknews.com

Panama Rotary Honors Local Crime Fighters

PANAMA CITY — For Norm Gulkis, his enduring image of Frank McKeithen is that of the Bay County sheriff crawling alongside a wrecked Toyota pickup to engage a suspect with a handgun pressed against his chin, threatening to commit suicide.

McKeithen remembers that event about three years ago, although it is blurred with similar situations. Sheriff’s officers were in pursuit of the man when he lost control and his truck ended up in a ditch. Assessing the situation, he was convinced the man was committed to shooting himself and even thought about trying to reach for the gun but worried he would not be fast enough. McKeithen does not remember what he told the young man — he said those situations are fluid in their chaos, that improvisation is necessary — but he somehow convinced the subject not to kill himself.

“That’s the definition of serving above yourself,” Gulkis said, a phrase repeated often in his introductory remarks before he presented the sheriff with a Paul Harris Fellowship award, which is named for the Rotary Club’s founder.

Humbled by the award, McKeithen responded he felt his actions to stop that person from committing suicide were both to protect his fellow officers and part of his job duties to protect people from themselves and others.....

Read more in Panama City News Herald

- Contributed by Ron Nethercutt

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Amazing projects on Rotary Showcase

Rotary members in Nigeria banded together to provide 850 children in Nnewi, Anambra State, with medicine to kill a type of intestinal worm transmitted through the soil.

A single 400 milligram tablet of Abendazole deworms the children and kills the parasite, which is prevalent in many areas of Nigeria. The project is an example of Rotary’s work in preventing disease, but also in supporting education, as the parasite affects the children’s ability to concentrate on school work.

Members of the club distributed the tablets in October to an enthusiastic group of school staff and students. The project is just one of many that Rotary members have shared on Rotary Showcase.......

Read more in Rotary Voices

Finding meaning in life during a Rotary Youth Exchange

In 2013-14, I took part in a Rotary Youth Exchange from Taiwan to the United States. It gave me the opportunity to see things from a new perspective, think differently, and to gain a better understanding of myself. I made many new friends.

I grew up in a single parent home with my mother, who had lost most of her left arm earlier in life. She was beautiful and strong and took care of me herself. We had no income and survived on the money the government gave us each month. I brought home part of my school lunch to use as breakfast or dinner the next day. This gave me compassion for children who don’t have enough to live on.

When I was 11, my mother died, and my father was given custody of me. But he abandoned me after only a few months, and I was sent to an institution for troubled boys. Although I hated being there, the place ultimately had a positive impact on my life and the director became like a mother to me. Under the support of the teachers and director, I developed a hunger for knowledge.....

Read More in Rotary Voices

Sunil's Corner

PDG Sunil K Zachariah has been invited as a Training Leader for the International Assembly for Rotary Governors at San Diego in Jan 2015.

Why I Am a Rotarian - Sunil

Keynote Address by PDG Sunil K Zachariah on 9 Sept 2012 at the RCGF of District 3190 at Bangalore

Rotary Institute, Cochin - 2009. PDG Sunil K Zachariah welcomes the gathering

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