Men like my dad are a dying breed. He is a visionary. He sees the way things could be ten years from now, and lives as if it’s real. Sometimes that makes it hard to live and work with him. There are details, bills to pay. But he never loses sight of his vision, keeps pushing to make it happen.
I think Henry Ford was like that. Also Thomas Edison, Jonas Salk. Guys not satisfied with what is available now, who prefer to have something better. I work for Rockwell Collins, a company that was started by a visionary named Arthur Collins, a teenager who tinkered with radios in his garage. That company now employs over 10,000 people — 10,000 jobs that are the direct result of one man’s vision.
Dad’s passion is native high-protein, non-GMO grains that can be processed into foodstuffs for animals and humans at a fraction of what it costs today. He is taking on the behemoths of the industry, who invest billions not in research and development of non-GMO products, but in advertising and persuasion. His mind is on the rural farmer. He combines his love of science with the message of hope, joy, and peace through Jesus Christ. His varieties have taken over the central plains of Asia, spreading among the local farmers there by word of mouth.
Dad was born in 1938, and grew up in Severn, MD, just south of Baltimore. His father owned a tobacco and vegetable farm where the ground is sandy like a beach. Dad started a roadside stand on New Cut Road, selling vegetables to passers-by. That vegetable stand has blossomed into Schillinger Farms, Inc. — an operation that now sells over 30 kinds of vegetables and fruits including 12 different varieties of tomatoes, and tons of flowers — over 20,000 trays and 8000 hanging baskets each year. You can visit there today — just look for the big red barn. Check out this link: http://www.examiner.com/article/papa-john-s-schillinger-s-farm-the-treasure-of-severn-maryland.
Dad is a man’s man, passionate about fishing and hunting. I get the pleasure of accompanying him from time to time. The featured image on this article is from a hunting trip to Russell, KS, which you can read about here: https://wallsofbronze.wordpress.com/2015/10/29/russel-kansas-opening-day-of-hunting-season-2010/.
I love my dad, and am very proud of him. He is a man driven by vision. He has given his life to carrying out that vision, willing it into reality. Someday, there will be hundreds, if not thousands of people who are gainfully employed because of his vision. There are very few men like him. I’m grateful to be part of his legacy.