My KDL Story: Chuck Myers
"[Advocacy] probably had been in me all along, but I didn't realize just how much until I got involved with the library..."
The common theme that runs through Chuck Myers' many passions — including playing blues harmonica and collecting music, flying kites, wooden games and technology — is what he calls "cradle to grave literacy" that everyone can access.
Take libraries. Myers's passion for libraries took off in the mid-1980s, during his many trips to the small, historic library building in Lowell with his youngest daughter, Kelsay.
"She devoured books," he said. "But I noticed a problem right away. One, there were about six steps to get into the building, which meant not everybody could use it. And the children's section was tiny, just tiny. I said to myself, you know, for a library, this just doesn't do it."
Myers dropped in on a Friends of the Library meeting, and ended up spearheading what would become a $2.4 million campaign to move the branch out of the 700 square-foot Grant building into its own, 8,000 square-foot building downtown, named the Englehardt branch for major donors Harold and Mildred Englehardt.
Advocacy "probably had been in me all along, but I didn't realize just how much until I got involved with the library," Myers said.
Now chairman of KDL's Board of Trustees, Myers keeps his passions fed by expanding his own interests and capabilities. Though he still loves reading print books, he's also got an eReader — and sometimes uses both versions simultaneously to read the same book. He also volunteers in the computer lab at Porter Hills Retirement Community, where he loves introducing new technology to seniors.
"Life evolves constantly, and we simply must adapt in order to live the fullest," he said. "Most importantly, this includes exercising our brain, the most critical muscle in our body. Exploring new adventures is perfect exercise — whether you simply read about one or physically pursue a new adventure yourself, your life will evolve with personal accomplishment."
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