There were three teachers at Douglass High School that really made a difference in my life.
The first person in my life at Douglass would have to be Oscar R. Gill, this man was determined that everyone that left Douglass would have a basic education. He would tell you every day that you could always do better. There was no such thing in his vocabulary as “I don’t Know”. Mr. Gill, was determined that you could achieve anything that you wanted to do as long as you were willing to prepare for it. He taught me that you always had to be one step ahead of the game that no matter what you thought you knew, that there was always more that you could learn. In my life today, I am still trying to learn more and achieve more knowledge because of the study skills that Mr. Gill taught me.
Then, there was Mr. Howard Young. The way he loved Literature and Poetry and the way he delivered it really struck a cord with me. From listening to him made me want to read and read with an understanding. I still love to read and it is one of my favorite past times. Sometimes when things seems to be going wrong, I can always pick up a book and start to read, and everything around me seems to change.
The next person that made a difference in my life at Douglass would have to be Robert Deering, our Football and Basketball coach. He instilled in me that life is not easy and that there will be a lot of tough barriers that you will have to overcome. That sometimes, you will have to play hurt, but you will still be in the game. And that to be in the game to the finish, you must give it all you got, and that way you can always come out a winner, because you know you never gave up. He taught me that you have to work hard to accomplish anything in life. He also instilled in me that even though you might be running uphill, you can always reach back and get that second breath and keep climbing.
Douglas (Doug) Releford