January 9, 2014

Inspiration for Youth, or All of Us?

There once was a Dutch immigrant during the Second World War. He came to America with his wife and very little money. His skill set: horses.  His name is Harry de Leyer.  For many years Harry worked as an instructor and trainer for a prominent girls school in New York.  He happened upon a horse while looking for a prospect for the school.  The horse was heavy boned, very thin and unhealthy and happened to be on a meat wagon headed for slaughter.  Harry bought the horse for $80.  With years of training, this horse Snowman and Harry, won several National Jumping titles.  The following paragraph is a quote from Harry during an interview.

“If you work hard and believe in yourself you can make your own luck.  When I went through Ellis Island and landed in Hoboken I wasn’t sure what the future held, but I knew that I was willing to do what I needed to get ahead.  I did not expect to be able to work with horses, but just by doing what I loved I was able to find a way to succeed and work in a job that I loved.  But for young people just starting out, its important to remember that there is a lot of hard work doing things that are not very glamorous or interesting before you ever get near a spotlight.  Still, if you do each task right everyday, even the humble jobs, you will make steady progress toward your goals.  When times are tough, its easy to get discouraged, but if you imagine what you want and keep going after it you will be amazed at what you can achieve.”

Harry de Leyer, The Flying Dutchman, the Galloping Grandfather

You can enjoy the story of Harry and Snowman by reading for yourself Snowman, the Eighty Dollar Champion.  It’s an inspiring story!

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