Frederick Douglass and me Essay

Submitted By Rob-O'Neil
Words: 586
Pages: 3

Robert O’Neil
Essay 1
Essay 1
I grew up in the 1970’s where I was oblivious to Vietnam ending, the Watergate scandal and the cultural changes that were continuing since the late 1960’s. I was a “happy-go-lucky” young boy. Many days after school in the spring and early fall months you could find me playing wiffleball with neighborhood friends or at the very least having “a catch” with my best friend and next door neighbor John. Summertime days were filled with swimming in John’s pool and/or playing softball or kickball with the bevy of children from the neighborhood. Although I was born in Boston and spent until age 6 in Hanover, Massachusetts, my first recall of school was in Wallingford, CT where my parents, my sister and I moved to in the early 1970’s. I went to an elementary school there by the name of Moses Y. Beach. I lived close enough to walk there. I remember in 2nd grade learning how to write, printing regular letters then learning and printing capital letters on a rough “pulpy” paper that actually gave one vertical lines designed as limits on high the letters should be. I really enjoyed my elementary school experience. Middle School was just “o.k and spent at Robert H. Early Middle School in Wallingford, CT. I was an average to above average student at this time excelling at some subjects (spelling, math and english) and just mediocre in others. I don’t recall my parents ever “pushing” me in school. Neither of my parents went to college. My mom was a young homemaker with 2 children while my Dad worked as a typesetter for a printing company in Hamden. While I was 14 and in the 9th grade, my Dad abruptly passed away at age 38 from a heart attack. The school gave my sister and me 2 weeks off to grieve and to re-gather ourselves. This put a big damper on the rest of my freshman year, but I don’t feel it impacted my 10th-12th grades very much. Unlike Frederick Douglas, who had people overtly prohibiting him from learning even basic reading and writing skills, I had none of that. For me, growing up far