Author’s Notes and Acknowledgments

I was born at an early age….

What might have been seen as precocity in the first half of my life has evolved into a certain independence in this half. Here I want to give tribute to some of the key players in bringing this book to fruition.

From my mother, I inherited a drive for improvement, and from my father, hard work as the proper and justifying role of man. I met my wife when I was fourteen, and was blown away by her wise and serious essay on the stages of life, read by her to our English III class in high school. Approaching our fiftieth wedding anniversary, she has been the tether that kept me connected to those most important things in life. Five years after our first meeting, we had our first daughter ...

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