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Spencer for Hire :: Keeping It Humble

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With my mom and dad both dedicating their lives to their respective communities, I guess it was only fitting that I did the same. My dad served the city of New York for over 30 years before having a stroke in 2001. It was an honor to be by his side in his time of need and a pleasure to watch the many people of his community come to the hospital to wish him well.

I remember a time in our community when we spoke to each other and everyone on the block knew one another. If you were acting up, Sister Sloan had the right to spank your butt and send you home (where you would probably get another spanking). So in honor of my dad, do this for me: go out of that house you’ve lived in forever or just bought and introduce yourself to someone in your neighborhood with no other intentions but to give a warm hello and a smile.

My mom has worked for the mayor of New York for as long as I could remember. Creating organizations and being involved in the community is her gift. She raised 3 kids when my dad left and had to turn to government assistance a year or so to keep our heads above water. Boy, those were hard times. To her credit she has 3 college graduate children with successful tours in the military. So in honor of my mom, do this for me: if you see an old lady crossing the street, give her a hand. If you see a family at the bus stop in the rain or in the burning heat, offer a ride. If you could help a single mom or dad get into a home, or maintain one by going the extra mile, do it.

When I was a child there were men in my community that I wanted to be like and model myself after. I’m not talking about football players or entertainers rather, businessman and professionals I saw everyday and interacted with. They were proud men in the community who were admired, well respected and knowledgeable in many areas. The most important thing in their lives was their families and a home to put them in.

They seemed to have peace in their lives and always knew how to handle any given situation (very few boys would have their pants hanging off their butts if more men were around like that today). Well, in my journey to be like them I was reminded of how these great men came into being.
To explain, I have to first tell you about a strong Black woman, my Aunt Thelma Davis.

This woman, from Birmingham Alabama, was the epitome of class, grace, love and beauty, with a heart of gold. My parents would send me and my sisters to visit her and my cousins in the summer. We lived in an apartment in New York City, so to go to the south and be in a home was an experience in itself. This is where I first learned about the pride and joy of owning a home.

She decorated her home like a palace and kept it clean every day. The lawn was beautifully manicured and the backyard was a huge playground for kids. I would hear her on the phone talking about what she wanted my uncle to upgrade next or what she wanted to improved or enhance. I remember when a burning cross was placed on our (her) lawn.

Every member in my family was furious except her. Her words were; this is my home and I’m not leaving. Women like this create strong Black men. They stand in front to take the lead, they stand next to us for support and encouragement and they stand behind us to keep us going when we give up.

On Monday morning, the day after Easter, she went to sleep and never woke up- no hospital, no doctors, no pain. She was in her bed and in her home, a place where she raised her family for over 30 years. The home will be passed on to a family member and a new life will begin again. I will miss her more than I can imagine.

When you’re purchasing a home, this is what it’s really all about. Buy a home to create long lasting memories, great family moments and wealth for the ones that will follow after you.

This is what I dedicated my life to doing and how I plan to one day be among those great men I call my role models. So in memory of my aunt, do this for me: if you don’t own a home go to any organization or institution willing to take the time to teach you and learn about homeownership. Come to a 5th District AME Church Seminar or go to any home buyer’s seminar. Do whatever you have to do to get yourself and your family in a home.

Call me and I will promise to take 5 minutes to answer any questions you have. I can be reached at 909.248.4830 ext 228. Anyone who knows me, knows I will not break a promise. Make a promise to yourself that you will be in your home before the New Year. I won’t give up on you so DON’T GIVE UP.

Because of certain situations, I have worked with clients for 6 months to a year to get them into a home, and it’s worth it. Ask the Miller family of Moreno Valley. Katana and Joey have two children and recently purchased a beautiful dream home in the Ranch. It took us over 6 months to make it happen but that property now belongs to them. If you own a home, help a family member, friend or co-worker get into a home. Remember, to whom much is given, much is required.

Finally, this issue is for the individuals who take time out of their busy lives and schedules to read my column. The calls I get for home loans, advice, and support or just to say hello has been overwhelmingly great. Allow me to take the time to say thank you, and I will continue to serve the Riverside Community to the best of my ability. See you next week.

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