Harker Heights Police Chief Mike Gentry was the featured speaker at the Heights Rotary Club’s meeting Sept. 5 at the St. Paul Chong Hasang Church Parish Center.
Gentry’s speech focused on the true measure of value in human beings.
“The true value of a person is if they’ve been effective in serving others,” he said.
Gentry shared two personal stories as parallels to show that as people face death, they can choose what they leave behind.
The first story was about a good friend who died at a young age. Gentry said once his friend realized his days were numbered, he chose to spend that time encouraging friends and family and doing things to make life better for them.
“What he taught them was that in dying, just as in living, you can leave a blessing with all those you meet,” Gentry said. “That is an unselfish view of existence and life.”
The other story was about Gentry’s mother. As her life faded away, she became an angry, hateful person who could only express her feelings about her son through a long line of obscenities
“Her parting words were that she had felt that way about me her entire life,” Gentry said.
Gentry is convinced that law enforcement officers, along with everyone, must learn valuable lessons from all they see and experience.
“From terrible events come powerful lessons,” he said. “From wonderful events come powerful lessons.”
Gentry asked Rotarians to take positive lessons to others after the meeting.
“That’s what I like about police work, the U.S. Army and Rotary,” he said. “We’re here to strive to make life better.”