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De Witt Clinton III

Residing In: Dunbar, PA USA

(In 2002) After high school, I enlisted in the USN for four years. Went on three tours to Viet Nam aboard an anti-submarine aircraft carrier as a Radarman. Married Judy Huizenga two years after enlisting. We ultimately had three children and adopted four. After the Navy, I went to Florida Christian College in Temple Terrace, Florida for four years. Since then I have preached in Alaska, Oregon, Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana and West Virginia. I have also worked as a carpenter, cabinet maker and maintenance man to supplement my income at various times over the past - how many years did you say it's been? (One of the few mistakes I did not make during my life was thinking that preaching was going to be a lucrative career.)

Sixteen years ago I went back to school for my BA degree in American Social History and my MA in the teaching of English. Judy and I divorced eight years ago and I remarried and moved to West Virginia where I now live and minister to Ronrney Christian Church, a small town congregation of about eighty-five members.

Of my seven children, most live in California near Judy. One lives here in West Virginia and is recently married. Our oldest daughter is currently expecting her third child. My wife Ruth has one son who teaches school in New York.

At present we live with a collie, a golden retriever and two rescues?? in a house I built on a hillside in the middle of several acres of woodland. A century-old one room school connects to one end of the house and serves as my office. Although only ten minutes from town our Tanglewood Manor is peaceful and secluded. In addition to our four dogs and a variety of smaller farm animals, we are in the process of beginning a golden retriever kennel. (Ruth says a couple of goats would be nice, too, but she and I are currently negotiating.)

Aside from the church work, which takes most of my time, my interests are woodworking, horticulture, hiking, our dogs and my writing. Most of my vacation time has been spent here in WV. Where else than where country roads meander through the mountain Mama's, almost heaven?

I write regularly for the local newspaper and speak over the radio. Awards and recognition? Not Likely. I have lost contact with my WCHS classmates, but then being the quiet and retarded fellow I was, I had already lost contact before I left high school. I have little connection with Watseka other than a foster brother who lives there. I correspond and visit with him on a regular basis.

Forty years of adult life has taught me that our accomplishments are not all that great in the overall scheme of things, no matter what they are; but, I believe the closest to "great" we get and the warmest reward we ever experience, is when we help others to grow into better people. I work one on one, mostly, trying to help folks live better lives and also to prepare themselves for the next life. (My chief excuse for being bold enough to attempt such work is the many, many mistakes I myself have made and what little I have learned from them.) A lot of my time is spent in marriage counseling (things I should have learned and lived myself) and in teaching small Bible classes. The most amazing thing I have ever witnessed is how the love, peace and knowledge of the Carpenter's Son can change lives.

I don't know that I have a 'Biggest disappointment" unless it is that I am where I would like to be with my life, but why did it take so long to get here and why did I have to make so many mistakes and hurt so many people along the way. I suspect that none of us reaches perfection and I certainly have not, but I wish I had been a lot closer to it when I graduated WCHS so that there would not have been so far to travel between then and now.

I am still working on the house and grounds, now, after six years. I would like to finish this work and then begin to devote more of my time to writing. There are some books in me somewhere that need to be written. Most of my high school days were filled with work. School was hard for me and then, too, I worked at Neff’s Bi-Lo supermarket on the comer from what used to be the lumber store - Main Street and? I enjoyed carrying groceries for your parents and knowing almost everyone in town, at least by face. Ah, yes, now that I think back, there were Sunday evening church services at Pittwood Christian, made especially memorable because Sheliah D. sat with me. And then there was that time that a sweet WCHS sophomore blond with braces and I were politely asked to leave the theater (no necking allowed). As I recall, Mom was waiting on the front porch for me, with tapping toe and pointing finger. How she found out about my misconduct before I arrived home, is yet a mystery. The young lady's wise parents were responsible, I am sure, for the brush off she gave me soon after that memorable event. Speaking of brushes, we are probably all reminded that my misdemeanors were not in the same league as those who did their thing, brush in hand, high above Watseka, but they were good times.

The best place in the world to live is West Virginia; that is, if you don't care much about earning a living. The second stuff I've got to share is that if you are looking for the greatest return for your investments of time, money, labor and love, give Jesus the whole pie. Second best
investment, get a golden retriever, in fact, you'd be love ahead if you got two.

School Story:

Yearbook: 59, 60, 61, 62